Rowde farmer John Butler hopes to increase his educational work, if he gets consent to refurbish a barn.

Mr Butler, of Rowdefield Farm in Consciences Lane, has been hosting educational visits since 2005 and arranges about 40 a year.

Many of the children are with Braeside educational centre in Devizes, with others direct from local schools and Wiltshire College.

The farm has an arrangement with Rowdeford School, providing lessons to small groups with special needs.

So far this year almost 1,000 children have visited the farm for practical indoor activities such as seed grinding for flour, oil pressing from rape, egg hatching and animal feeding.

In its application to Wiltshire Council, agent Building Design Services says: “The indoor activities take place in a small barn, which is now proving too small for the increasing numbers. The classroom would allow a greater range, number and higher standard of practical activities.”

The proposal is for a barn to provide 50 per cent agricultural and 50 per cent classroom use.