WIRRAL'S Tam O'Shanter urban farm celebrates its 25th anniversary today.

The special occasion was marked with a visit from Mayor of Wirral Cllr Alan Jennings who collected the farm's annual 'rent' in the form of a single pine cone.

The yearly tradition involves each mayor accepting a pine cone from representatives of the Birkenhead-based farm in return for a year's rent.

Cllr Jennings also planted an ornamental mountain ash tree to mark the urban farm's milestone birthday.

He said: "This farm is really important to the people of Wirral. It is, in a sense, a charity because it is run with donations and fundraising efforts and we need to make sure it is able to stay open for another 25 years.

"Children of all ages come here to experience another life outside of the busy urban world.

" For a lot of children, it is the only chance they get to see animals like these and experience a taste of the country. Tam O'Shanters really is a jewel in the crown of Wirral."

The event was also the official launch of the Farm Friends' Footpath project which has been set up to raise funds to create a new footpath throughout the farm.

The scheme invites users of the attraction to buy a brick for £40 to go towards the path.

Debbie Green, fundraising co-ordinator at the farm, said: "Fundraising is vital here at Tam O' Shanter. We always need more funds to keep us going and this footpath project is a great way to get involved and make your mark."

For more information, contact Debbie Green at debbie.green61@ntlworld.com.