THE countryside rolled into a primary school much to the delight of children.

Farmyard animals made their way to The Valley School in Astley Bridge to celebrate the start of spring.

And unlike the old adage, teachers said they found working with children and animals hugely enjoyable.

The school transformed itself into a farm for the day with geese, goats and lambs from Fishers Mobile Farm and even a farm tractor from Smithills Open Farm.

Children came to school dressed as farmers and the hall was turned into a barn for a traditional barn dance. Deputy headteacher, Judith Worthington, said: “The atmosphere was tremendous. The children made scarecrows, some of which will be entered into a festival.”

“The day was organised to mark the start of spring and about giving children more experiences.

“The children were still talking about it the next day and busy writing thank you letters.”

The themed event was connected to the school’s focus on science, technology and literacy.

Children enjoyed donkey rides, while the rest of the animals made themselves at home, with the hens actually laying eggs.

Mrs Worthington said: “All 500 children took part in the day — from nursery to year six.

“They were absolutely amazed by the animals.”

And following the visit, children returned to school the next day to find out the eggs they have been looking after hatched and The Valley is now home to baby chicks.

Mariyah Patel, aged 10, said: “We’re lucky to have a day like this because the activities have been really good fun. My favourite part was seeing the animals, they were so cute.”

Haleema Mitha, aged seven, enjoyed her ride on Charlie the donkey around one of the school fields.

She said: "I loved it because it was bumpy and you got to stroke the donkey.”