ROSETTES rained down on the pedigree lambs from an innovative Winsford farming project at the Royal Cheshire County Show this year.

Let’s Farm trains young people with learning disabilities to be farm ‘rangers’, where they take on responsibilities for all aspects of farm animal husbandry.

This year, a group of rangers took some of their best pedigree Shropshire lambs to the Cheshire Show, with some truly fantastic results.

All together, Let’s Farm’s lambs scooped four first-place rosettes, along with three third-place, and four fourth-place, which by anyone’s standards, is a massive achievement.

In fact, the rangers did such a good job showing their animals, some of the other farms competing actually asked them to handle some of their lambs in the showring too.  

Learning disability champion and co-founder of Let’s Farm, Nicola Colenso, said: “The fact the Cheshire Show is so inclusive, meaning our rangers can enter, is just phenomenal.

Rangers (L-R): Megan Snape; Tom Garner; Katie AshworthRangers (L-R): Megan Snape; Tom Garner; Katie Ashworth (Image: Nicola Colenso)

“Their lambs are judged by exactly the same standards as everyone else’s, and we’re uber-proud to have won so many rosettes. 

“These lambs were born here, on the project the rangers are running, and they’ve nurtured them and brought them up.

“They’ve even halter trained them themselves ready for the show. They're their pride and joy – it’s just wonderful.

A glut of red - first-place - for the rangers at Let's Farm A glut of red - first-place - for the rangers at Let's Farm (Image: Nicola Colenso)

“When rosettes are won, it’s a rubber stamp for the standard we’re delivering and a reflection of the work the rangers are doing.

“They’re working to a very high standard. This isn’t a petting farm – these are pedigree sheep and they're raised to pedigree standards.

“All the other farmers in the sheep tent were delighted to welcome us. They always come over to chat.

Let's Farm ranger, Ryan Ward, exhibiting at the Royal Cheshire County ShowLet's Farm ranger, Ryan Ward, exhibiting at the Royal Cheshire County Show (Image: Let's Farm)

The project is based at Stocks Hill Farm, Darnhall, which has been in Let’s Farm co-founder Rosie Lee’s family for 60 years.

Asked whether she was more proud of the rangers or her sheep, Rosie said: “I can’t help but he proud of my sheep, but the rangers excelled themselves.

“Not only did they step up to show their own sheep, but they also assisted other breeders to show theirs.

“They have to be walked and held in a certain way. Showing is a skill in itself and to be asked is a real honour.”

“One of the judges said she was amazed by the responsibility they took on while handling the sheep in the showring.

“That’s a huge amount of responsibility and shows enormous trust.”