A FARMER has swapped the stuffy classroom for life outdoors as she tries to educate children about the food they eat.

Georgie Mitchell, 31, became a farmer quite by accident after she accepted a poorly orphaned lamb from a nearby farmer.

And from nurturing the lamb back to full health, she caught the bug for life outdoors and has now become a full-time farmer.

But her wish to help educate children where their food comes from in a new venture called Thought for Food.

She said: “I used to work at Blackburn College and we used to live in a farm cottage in Simonstone, with lots of farms around us.

“One day, a farmer gave us an orphaned lamb which was very poorly.

“He said it probably wouldn’t survive but we put it next to the fire and I bottle-fed it and slowly it got better and became a fit and strong lamb. We added a Shetland pony and then it all started.

“Then we got another lamb, and then more, and then we got some pigs and it snowballed from there.

“The pigs we reared were very well cared for and when we sent them to slaughter, we had orders for the meat. It never saw our freezer, as people recognised it would be quality meat.”

“I was just running out of time trying to give my all to my professions and trying to look after my livestock. So I made a decision to give farming a proper go and we’ve never looked back.”

As her operation grew, she and the family found pockets of land, which were lent to her, to keep her livestock on.

And now she has turkeys, as well as the sheep and pigs, which are all hand-fed and free-range across the borough.

But it is her latest venture which will bring her teaching skills and her farming expertise together.

She said: “The longer I have been doing this, the more I have thought about the learning possibilities for younger children.

“There is a big push on to get people to eat healthier and I think it’s important that children get the right information.

“There is so much misinformation about animals being mistreated and it’s just not correct. We are aiming to put things right.

“There’s so much to learn on a farm. It’s like a big science lesson and it’ll be based around the four seasons and it will be a four-tiered program.

“We have got some land in Fence and we are turning an old barn - which we’ll call The Coop - into a classroom and we are currently making sure all the health and safety requirements are met and all the right processes in place.

“We have had a lot of interest already from local schools, which is brilliant.”