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Farmer Palmer’s Autumn Update

By September 14, 2020April 1st, 2022No Comments

Farmer Palmer’s Autumn Update for You and Your Little VIPs

Thank you for all your visits!

We really appreciate your support.
It has been so fantastic to see you this Summer.

We have now planned how Autumn & Winter will work, here is your Autumn Update.

There has been a significant drop off in numbers for the afternoons so here’s what we are doing to protect our recovery into next year.

We are pulling out all the stops to give you the best we can offer, undercover and outside when the weather & clocks will start to change.

This announcement will let you know the following:

  • When will Farmer Palmer’s be open this Autumn/Winter?
  • How Farmer Palmer’s is reopening the Soft Play and Little Farmer’s Barn this Autumn
  • What will our timetable look like?
  • Why we recommend booking at least 48 hours in advance.
  • Why we cannot let Covid cancel Halloween and Christmas
  • How we are “Driving-In” into the future
  • What you need to know about Annual Pass use

Welcome desk at Farmer Palmer's

When will Farmer Palmer’s be open this Autumn/Winter?

Our opening times are changing from Monday 21st September 2020. Our pricing will be changing as we bring in the additional items required to reopen indoor play and guineapig handling again.

  • Monday – Friday Opening Times -9am – 2pm, £0 -£12 per person/per day
  • Weekends Opening Times – 9.30am – 3.30pm, £0-£14 per person/per day
  • October Half Term Opening Times will  be am & pm sessions
  • Then back to 9-1 Monday to Friday and 9.30 – 3.30 Weekends

We recognise many of you visit after the school drop off, leave when children need school run collection; or your little ones simply need an afternoon nap. We have been listening to all of your feedback and comments and have seriously run the numbers on Daily Paid Entry compared with Annual Pass Visits for every day in 2019 to give us the heads up on what 2020 autumn will realistically look like.

The decision is based upon:

  • The booking activity in the past few weeks
  • Your feedback and comments
  • The statistics from 2019

We have:

  • For Daily Paid Visitors: Created additional weekday and weekend tickets in our website Ticket System
  • For Annual Pass Holders: Created new times for you to book in your Annual Pass Portal

ANNUAL PASS HOLDERS: There will be no afternoon sessions.

(If you already have a 9 am – 1 pm ticket booked for a session beyond 21st September, these will be valid for 9 am-2 pm when the opening times change.)

Boy playing in Soft Play at Farmer Palmer's Farm Park

How is Farmer Palmer’s reopening the Soft Play Zone and Little Farmer’s Barn this Autumn?

Answer: Carefully!

We have had to identify and manage risk by:

  • Calculating capacity (which turns out to be less than 1/3 of normal)
  • Calculating the ventilation flow with the help of a Ventilation Expert
  • Removing certain items from the play areas
  • Finding out where we could buy a brilliant sanitizing “fogging machine” to clean the indoor play efficiently and hygienically
  • Asking you if a timed slot or one in, one out system would work best for you.
  • Speaking to other play area owners, finding out what works and does not, learning from their experience
  • Training team members to oversee entrance, exit points, and to monitor/regulate numbers to no more than the maximum persons allowed to enter the play structure at any one time
  • Considering how coloured wrist bands can be applied
  • Getting new signage for clear communication
  • Insisting face masks must be worn by adults

Combining all the elements above, we have now created a BRAND NEW timetable of daily activities.

This is the only way we can fairly, and safely, offer Indoor Play at Farmer Palmer’s.

There will be several Sessions of Little Farmer’s Barn access available each day. Sessions will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis at the entrance of the Little Farmer’s Barn. Please be aware that the Little Farmers Barn runs with a time allocation & colour coded wristband system, first come first served, please see the barn Supervisor on arrival. The capacity is only 43% of full site capacity. Sadly not everyone will get a band.

(Update Sept 2020: The Soft Play Zone is remaining closed for the time being, indoor play available in the Little Farmer’s Barn Only. We are having to run this on limited capacity to comply with guidelines. If you do not get the chance to use this area on your visit we apologies but your safety remains our top priority).

Wristbands will be sanitised between each use and there are times in between play sessions when staff will routinely clean these areas.


(subject to changes)


(subject to changes)


*Please check the printed timetable at the front desk on the day of your visit. These timetables are subject to changes and things move pretty quickly down on the farm!

What will you be able to do with your children at the Farm Park if the weather is wetter

Our focus is to ensure there is plenty to do this Autumn. In fact, when working out our timetable we sometimes struggle to fit it all in!

Please be aware this may change as we flex to a new routine and all learn together.

Guinea Pig Handling is making a COMEBACK!

Your fluffy little friends have missed their cuddles with you! The handling sessions will be running slightly different this Autumn as we incorporate social distancing and sanitising before entry into the area. Please listen carefully to the information and guidance given by the team.

We have updated our Hen House MENU!

We’re delighted to bring you a NEW Autumn Winter menu, we hope you will continue to enjoy lunch with us over the coming months.

We will also be making the Party Rooms available for additional seating, limited numbers, in a socially distanced way, for lunchtimes.

(Update: Sept 2020 – we have had a little moooove around in the Hen House to comply with the latest Government Guidelines, please watch the video to see the NEW Hen House layout)

homemade cake in farmer palmers cafe

Visits are still selling like “hot cakes!”

We recommend booking at least 48 hours in advance.

As I am sure you are aware some days have been sold out. We do monitor this very carefully and each week we will adapt to ensure enough tickets are available for booking up to our capacity and break-even point.

Please remember the charge for swapping paid tickets was only introduced due to the high number of causal swaps being requested. Annual Pass Holders – you can cancel your own visits by signing in to your Customer Portal. If you are unable to visit, please do this as soon as possible so another family can reserve a visit.



Please help us to help you.
The guidelines are in place to keep us all safe.

The world or dinosaur roar trail

The World of Dinosaur ROAR

Be Humble Enough To See Your Mistakes:

We got far too excited, too quickly and started telling you about Roar before they had set foot on our soil

Be Courageous To Admit Them:

You may have noticed they are not here yet. Imagine our disappointment when at the meeting last week were told “Another 5 weeks” before they arrive. I have lifted my heavy heart and totally understand they have to get it right..

And Wise Enough To Correct Them:

By way of explanation. These are the first dinosaurs of their kind, ever. The makers are a small, dedicated company down to 4 employees & working all hours. But the 11 suppliers that supply them have a pyramid of suppliers themselves. And when Munch’s colour blue is made of 6 shades and one is not right, or Whack’s eyes arrive but there’s one missing, no one can see into the future…

So I want to say Thank You for your patience. These delays are out of our hands.

We are OPEN every day until 22nd December in 2020.
We will re-open in January but the date is still under consideration.

Children dressed up at Farmer Palmer's for Halloween

Will Covid Cancel Halloween and Christmas?

NOT IF WE HAVE ANYTHING TO DO WITH IT! As a team, we just have to think outside the box, be clever and work together. Farmer Palmer’s will deliver, but not as you knew it!

We know you’ll help us by planning your visit with your favourite family bubble.

We are still going to channel our decorating spirit and celebrate Halloween with pumpkins and lights and other spooky sights.

We’ll be running our popular “Hunt the Clues” Halloween Trail again this year and we are going to be encouraging your “little beasties” to join in the fun and dress up with us! More details coming soon . . .

Our kitchen team will be whipping up some Ghoulish Goodies!

Design a DRACULA for our Ghostly Gallery!
Draw/Paint/Create your own “Count Dracula” and bring it with you on your visit! We will display them proudly in our Ghostly Gallery for all to see throughout Halloween Half Term week!

Mask Up for Halloween
Buy a plain cloth face mask and bust out the glitter, sequins, makers, even tie-dye! Trace frightful shapes or fun patterns. Rock your one-of-a-kind creation every chance you get.

Father Christmas and Elf at Farmer Palmer's Dorset

So this is “Covid Christmas?” Tell us what you think . . .

Decorations? YES PLEASE, Dress up? OF COURSE, Mulled wine? Mince pies? YUMMY IDEA

The team are now in the very tricky planning stages of our “Farmer Christmas” offering for 2020. We need to consider:

  • Socially distancing the “Man in Red”
    Making sure the “Man in Red” is in a well-ventilated area (we all know what he’s like after those sprouts!)
    Can we host some additional (socially distanced) Christmas events/ activities?
  • Panto Dame to make you laugh!
    The weather
    How are we going to keep bringing you the magic of Christmas under the current guidelines?
    How will we handle bookings, what’s included, staffing, distancing, what if we are oversubscribed, (he can only do so much!)
    Creating magic through children’s eyes
    We’d love to hear your ideas, send them to me via email.

Annual Pass for Farmer Palmer's Farm Park Dorset

Annual Pass Use

Annual Pass Holders – Knowing our new times may not please everyone, especially those who want to visit after school but we have lots of weekends and school holidays.



Since taking out your membership ask yourself: Have I already visited 5 times? If yes your pass cost balances out so you are now coming in for free
For those who have not visited 5 times, your passes were probably extended so check in your portal when they expire, many of you have all of Easter and next summertime to use them.
If you are still not able to join us for the winter journey and feel upset that we will be closed between 2 pm and 4 pm please remember we are opening an hour earlier so sessions are 5 hours compared with the summer 4-hour sessions as well as indoor play.
That said if all of the above still leaves you upset because you can physically only visit in the afternoons we have considered a measured approach.

We can tell how many times you have visited, each visit is worth the admission price at the time. We can, in exceptional circumstances, deduct your usage from your pass cost and you can apply, in writing, by email below for us to consider a refund before the end of September. There is a limited budget for this.

Please remember our 2021 offering with dinosaurs and activities will be awesome and we will go back to morning and afternoon sessions. Before you request that refund consider if you are happy to pay any increased prices next year to rejoin.

Please email your query to
Please do not contact us via Facebook or Phone.
We are still running on limited teams and this is the best/most efficient way to have your query answered as quickly as possible.

Include the following in your email:

✔ Full Name

✔ Phone Number

✔ Pass Number (if you know it)

✔ Your Query

Many thanks

If you still have questions . . .

We now have a post on our website with ALL THE LINKS to the latest information. Please take a look.

Your Words are the Wind Beneath Our Wings.
Every day is a new challenge and we are learning as we adapt from Summer to Winter. Our loyal team are here to create for you and help you. All giving each other respect and care. Help us help you by giving us your feedback, then simply carry on being awesome! Treasure every moment of your cute “mini me’s” wonder and sense of adventure and hopefully we can all engage with our inner child.

Our goal is still, as always, to offer you the best we can at all times. We know we are achieving this by your kind words and your feedback is the icing on the cake for us. Thank you from our hearts.

Sandra, Farmer Palmer, our Team and all the Animals x

Farmer Palmer’s Autumn Update published 14.09.2020

Updated 25.10.2020


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