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At the Beautiful Farm 2008 Awards held today at the House of Commons in London, Cae Gwyn Farm in Snowdonia National Park, North Wales, was regional winner for Wales and the West of England.
Situated in Snowdonia National Park in North Wales, Cae Gwyn (meaning 'White Field') is a 190 acre sheep farm run on organic principles. The farm has a history dating back over 200 years.
The judges especially liked the way owners Steve and Yuki Barnett have integrated old and new. A modern campsite and bunk facilities now exist without changing the essence of the farm. The campsite has been listed as one of the top 10 most scenic campsites in the UK by 'The Guardian guide to Camping (2007)'.
The farm has a number of streams and the river 'Afon Eden' runs through it. The river is designated as a Special Area of Conservation and is home to one of the last breeding colonies of fresh water pearl mussels in Wales, as well as Atlantic salmon, otters, rainbow and brown trout and floating water-plantain. Being close to mountains, lakes, rivers and the sea, Cae Gwyn offers many possibilities for outdoor activities, and its location has been key to the success of the camping business.
The Awards Judge Adam Henson (of BBC TV's Countryfile programme) said "Today's winners successfully mix the business of farming with a genuine care for the environment that surrounds them." The Award Judges felt that this year's shortlisted entrants, managing small, medium and large-scale enterprises, farm in balance with nature. "These farms aim to give something back to the rural environment and economy. Well-managed crops, fields and hedgerows filled with wildlife, wildflower meadows, butterflies and insects - the countryside views we cherish most."
The Beautiful Farm Awards was hosted by James Paice MP, Shadow Agriculture and Rural Affairs, sponsored by New Holland Agriculture and organised by Farm Business magazine.