A fruit farm has joined residents stepping out every week to Clap for our Carers.

Wilkin and Sons in Tiptree, which is famous for its jams and preserves, sounds the factory whistle every Thursday at 8pm to applaud the NHS and key workers.

The steam powered hooter can be heard throughout the village and usually sounds to signal the start and end of the working day as well as the start and end of the lunch break.

The only other time the whistle sounds is for Armistice Day.

Len Friend, from Tiptree, said: “For the past few weeks the residents of our quiet cul-de-sac have all turned out to applaud the NHS and front line workers.

“Last Thursday as well as the usual round of applause we had the pleasure of the Wilkin & Son jam factory hooter echoing all over the village.

“The hooter, a vintage steam whistle, always sounds in the morning and evening and has become such a part of everyone’s life here that you never think about it, but, with the demise of industry in the UK the sound must now be fairly unique.”

Marketing manager Liz Baker said: “Our Factory Hooter has been operating for as long as anybody can remember, we’ve been making jam and marmalade at the factory since 1885.

“It is a steam powered hooter and can be heard throughout the village. Chief engineer Tim has kindly ensured it sounds at 8pm on a Thursday evenings to show our appreciation for the NHS and carers.

“We do get lots of great feedback about the hooter and how the village uses it to tell the time, and to structure their days. Occasionally when it has been faint, we have had inquiries asking if all is OK.”