Animal funds

Cherry Tree Farm in Methwold offers pet therapy sessions for young people struggling with mental health issues

Cherry Tree Farm in Methwold is well known for its fun and quirky animal activities including goat walking.

The Methwold attraction is also well known for supporting families with disabled children and has many regular visitors.

However, this year the popular West Norfolk attraction is offering specialist pet therapy sessions for young people with mental health issues and disabilities.

Families enjoy a fun day walking with goats at Cherry Tree Farm in Methwold, CREDIT Steven Hewitt (46546150)

The farm works with the Youth Advisory Council to offer free sessions for youth ages 11-16 and youth up to 25 with depression and anxiety.

Owner Tracy Peckham said: “The therapy is for people who need to relax around animals and don’t want to feel rushed or rushed.

“It’s also a great opportunity to build friendships between visitors, which is excellent.

Families enjoy a fun day walking with goats at Cherry Tree Farm in Methwold, CREDIT Steven Hewitt (46546187)
Families enjoy a fun day walking with goats at Cherry Tree Farm in Methwold, CREDIT Steven Hewitt (46546187)

“Our first sessions were a huge success and it was wonderful to see people’s knowledge and confidence grow.”

Cherry Tree Farm will provide the opportunity for people to have therapy sessions with different animals each week in groups of three or four.

Animals can range from rabbits to ponies and visitors can deal with the animals daily such as feeding, haymaking, watering, grooming or even just a cuddle.

The Cherry Tree Farm in Northwold is hosting two specialist ASD days this month.  Photos: SUBMITTED (42295632)
The Cherry Tree Farm in Northwold is hosting two specialist ASD days this month. Photos: SUBMITTED (42295632)

Lunch is provided and sessions will take place on Saturday mornings from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the afternoon.

To book a slot at one of the therapy sessions contact [email protected] or call Tracy Peckham on 07470220231.

Hard copies are also available for those who do not have access to email.

Families enjoy a fun day walking with goats at Cherry Tree Farm in Methwold, CREDIT Steven Hewitt (46546147)
Families enjoy a fun day walking with goats at Cherry Tree Farm in Methwold, CREDIT Steven Hewitt (46546147)

Cherry Tree Farm is also hosting Easter activities this weekend, including an egg hunt on April 17 with proceeds going to charity.

Tracy said: “We are sponsored by UPP Broadband on this day, so 50% of the money from the Egg Hunter tickets goes to our Sensory and Disabled Playground Fundraising to raise matching funds to apply for a grant.

“We need to raise £25,000 if possible to apply for a grant. This specialist play park will allow wheelchair users to take off and play on a level playing field and not be looked down upon. I am confident that wheelchair users wheelchairs should play like other people.

“We are doing so much for SEN families, adding a play park would be great but due to covid and weather our plans are behind schedule. If people could help us fundraise in any way , please contact us.”