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'Remarkable' births down on the farm

A SCHOOL farm which has never experienced lamb quadruplets in its 40-year history has had two sets within three days.

Last Thursday Rachel gave birth to four lambs at the Astor of Hever School at Maidstone, watched by expectant pupils and an Ofsted school inspector. Days later, last Saturday another set was born to a ewe named Mint.

Keith Eade, head of the school farm, said: "It's remarkable to have one set, let alone two. It must be the ram we've got here or the weather we've been having. Or perhaps there's something in the water.

"When Rachel gave birth we had a class of year nine pupils and a member of the school's Ofsted inspection team down here. The inspectors seemed to love it, actually, and once word got round they all kept popping down for a quick peek. We've got two more sheep who are ready to lamb so we'll have to see how many they end up having."

Members of the 50-strong Young Farmers' Club at the school have been bottle-feeding those lambs with which the ewes are unable to cope.

Mint's offspring are yet to be given names by club members, although Rachel's lambs have been dubbed Emile and Andy - after England footballers Emile Heskey and Andy Cole - and Chloe and Sarah, after year nine students Sarah Pett and Chloe Fisher, who assisted with their delivery.

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