A FAMILY-FRIENDLY farm has been announced as a finalist for a prestigious regional award.

Gemma’s Farm, in White Notley, has made it through to the final round for the best family attraction category at this year’s Muddy Stilettos Essex awards.

Led by its founder Gemma Culling, the farm is a mobile and static petting farm which has been educating and hosting public events for more than 15 years.

The aim of the regional awards is to celebrate independent lifestyle businesses across Essex.

Braintree and Witham Times: Adorable - a horse and a foal at Gemma's Farm Adorable - a horse and a foal at Gemma's Farm (Image: Gemma's Farm)

Gemma said “We are over the moon to be a finalist in the regional awards.

“It means so much to us that our customers value our local family farm so highly and we are really grateful to everyone who has voted for us so far.”

Gemma’s Farm allows attendees to meet chickens, sheep, goats, donkeys, ducks, ferrets, and alpaca up close in a safe and fun environment.

The business also now offers private visits, VIP experiences, glamping, firepits, or meeting the  farm’s large herd of horses.

It has also launched the walk on the wild side event where attendees can meet curious creatures like porcupines, meerkats, genet, and giant tortoises.

The petting farm is up against four other organisations in the category, including Colchester Zoo, Clacton Pier, Call of the Wild Zoo in Wickford and Barleylands Farm Park in Billericay.

She said: “It has been a dream of ours for some time now to be able to offer people a place they can visit that offers a hands-on, unique family experience.

“A place where they can get up close and personal and learn about each animal.

“We are delighted to have reached the finals for this award and look forward to welcoming people to our farm.”

The public can now vote for their favourite business until the regional awards close on April 18 at 1pm.

Braintree and Witham Times: Animal lover - Gemma CullingAnimal lover - Gemma Culling (Image: Gemma's Farm)

The winners of the 21 regional award categories will will be announced on May 2.

All finalists are being automatically entered into the national finals, where voting will take place between July three to 11.

To find out more about Gemma’s Farm, visit gemmasfarm.co.uk.