In 1848, the Harris family of farmers moved to Kent and planted potatoes, grain, beans, hops, vegetables in an area of 500 acres, and raised all kinds of cattle in the barn. Nothing has changed for 150 years and the Harris are still here. Currently, two brothers, John and Mark, representatives of the sixth generation of the Harris dynasty, run the farm. Of course, all these years the farm has changed but still is doing well and constantly grows, breeds and sells its produce. They even have their own store where you can buy fresh fruit and vegetables produced here and neighboring farms. In the store you can find freshly baked bread, cakes, meat, eggs, honey, home-made beer and cider, jams, and other preparations of vegetables and fruits.
In 2001, the farm joined a special environment friendly project and new hedges were planted surrounding 50 acres of land, designated to have a rest, nothing meant to grow there for several years. The roadside was planted with flowers and plants friendly to bees, butterflies and other insects. From artificial fertilizers, they switched to natural ones. The farm also has a half-wild forest and an artificial lake.
The farm is very child-friendly, kids can visit it at any time of the year, watch the animals and see for themselves how vegetables and fruits grow; in spring they can come and pick strawberries, in autumn apples. The hosts organize special children’s events from time to time. At Easter is Easter Rabbit Hunt, where you have to solve puzzles and be guided by clues to answer questions and win the chocolate bunny.
You can experience similar fun in the summer and walk around the woods and meadows with the map collecting information about plants and animals. In autumn, the farm invites us to a popular Halloween party at that time. Specially dressed actors scare us at every turn. An attraction for children is the type of wagon attached to the tractor. Each child sits in a separate carriage and the tractor rides around the field pulling them, great fun for children.
Adults are invited in December to try a typical English Christmas dinner, with turkey, brussels sprouts, parsley, all from their own farm and with the best Yorkshire pudding I’ve ever had the opportunity to try. Of course, baked on site.
The farm is located near Gravesend. Open from 9 to 5, and on Sundays from 10 to 4.
Manor Farm, New Barn Road
Kent, DA13 9PU