Newbridge Farm Park at Aylton is to open again on Saturday, July 21, after foot and month restrictions were finally lifted.

The Gardner family, which owns the attraction, say it is like "the end of a nightmare" and follows four months of restrictions due to the disease.

The Farm Park is particularly popular with school parties but all bookings had been officially cancelled by April 2, and the Gardners resigned themselves to losing "the best of the season" for 2001, which is the run-up to the school holidays.

Now the Department of the Environment, Farming and Rural Affairs has given the green light for an opening in time for the summer holiday period.

Diana Gardner said: "It's a great relief. All the work we did earlier to get ready for the season was a great ant-climax but now we're building up again, in time for the school holidays.

"It's the end of a nightmare. We never thought this would happen to us."

Mrs Gardner said the business had lost "an enormous amount of money" but the family was always determined to keep going.