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Case 320 - Family told they must use the indoor play barn before the outdoor activities at a petting farm

Issue

The enquirer visited a mini farm which also had an adventure playground and fishing lakes outside and an indoor soft play barn. They were told that if they wanted to use the indoor play barn they would have to pay and use this first before looking around the outside attractions due to "health and safety" reasons.

Panel decision

Young children are particularly vulnerable to zoonotic infections such as E-coli and good hygiene is very important in petting farms. This establishment has decided to implement a rule that the indoor play barn should be used before petting the animals to avoid the risk of any child picking up an infection from contaminated play equipment. In the panel’s view this is an entirely sensible measure, but the staff need to be trained to understand the reasons and be prepared to explain that clearly to visitors.

2014-08-19