|Cathedral closed until further notice|
A taste of the countryside comes to St Paul's
10 January 2013
Coming just three days after the traditional Plough Sunday, celebrated across the country, the Cathedral helped bring a little of the countryside to the City, to act as a reminder to the people of London where their food comes from, and to profile the work of the Addington Fund, an important farming charity.
From 7am until dusk, City workers and Cathedral visitors were able to see, up-close, some of the state-of-the art machinery used in today's farming, including a full-size New Holland combine harvester and three tractors. Livestock, including sheep, goats and poultry were outside the Cathedral, having come from the Surrey Docks Farm.
The special day coincided with the Addington Fund revealing details of a new emergency relief fund, being set up to help farmers who are struggling to feed their animals after one of the worst harvests on record. Sheep farmers are being especially hard hit with the start of the lambing season now getting under way, shadowed by depressed market prices due to the ongoing financial crisis in Europe.
Ian Bell, Director of the Addington Fund, said: "We see major problems ahead. Thousands of acres are still under water which means farmers have been unable to plant next year's crops.
The Reverend Canon Michael Hampel, Precentor of St Paul's Cathedral said: "We were delighted to welcome the farming community into the heart of the City and to see exactly where the food we pick up in the local supermarket comes from and to understand the human skill which lies behind the production of our lunchtime sandwich."