Marks Gate petting farm is clear of infection, say its owners

A city farm said it had not been hit by an outbreak of a diarrhoeal illness which has affected a number of petting farms across the country.

A spokesman for Wellgate Community Farm in Collier Row Road in Marks Gate said staff had not seen any cases of cryptosporidium infection.

Around 130 people caught the illness at petting farms in other parts of England between January and May this year, said Public Health England, which is urging people to wash their hands immediately after farm visits.

The bacteria that causes the diarrhoea is usually ingested when a person puts their fingers in their mouth after touching the animals or contaminated surfaces around the farm.

The Wellgate spokesperson added: “It is standard practice at our farm to ask people to wash their hands after petting animals.

“We also have a lot of signs with this advice.”