The annual wassail at The Folk in Gloucester on 13 January was a super well-attended affair with lots of morris dancing, sales stands, blessing of the Ashmeads Kernel in the courtyard, and the use of the late (and great) Eric Freeman‘s wassail cup.
It may not look much more than a gate, but this gate now allows safe pedestrian access to our perry orchard at Henley Bank Brockworth, Gloucestershire, which in turn enables volunteers to help manage the orchard, so the process of returning the orchard to something approaching its former glory can now begin in earnest. Many thanks to our treasurer Andy Ellis and his friend Richard for spending a weekend buying the materials and spending the time to get this job done.
Meanwhile, elsewhere at Henley Bank, Andy Ellis is also largely responsible for creating this ‘dead hedge’ and for all the clearing work that created the raw material from which it is made. It shows that we are making progress in restoring the orchard, making it a more welcoming and safer environment in which the local community will soon be able to join us in our volunteering work.
Note the cup of tea, resting atop the red post-banger, above David’s (our Chair of trustees) right shoulder. A hot cup of tea after an hour’s brisk and energetic work in an old traditional orchard is one of life’s pleasures.
GOT members will be attending and exhibiting fruit, juice and cider and perry at several shows this season.
There’s the Malvern Autumn Show, 22nd to 24th September where Jim Chapman will again be exhibiting his amazing collection of perry pears. Three Counties Showground, Malvern WR13 6NW.
Jim will also be displaying perry pears at Hartpury on the afternoon of Saturday 16th September.
And also on Friday 13th October at the Hereford Courtyard Theatre, Edgar St., Hereford HR4 9JR.
Additionally, there may be a display of plums at Hartpury on the afternoon of Sunday 27th August, primarily to show Gloucestershire’s plums varieties. If it happens, this will include the Bristol plum; until recently the only known tree had plum pox, but we now have a clean tree from which to propagate.
Not forgetting…the Frampton Country Fair, Sunday 10th September, one of the last truly country fairs. Tim Andrews, Trustee, will be there with his Orchard Revival cider and perry. For more information visit the website https://framptoncountryfair.co.uk or call 01452 740152 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
A very good turn out for the first Christmas market at Hartpury Orchard Centre last weekend!
Warm enough for folk to sit around outside enjoying a pint of perry, a mulled cider or a mug of homemade soup!
The Gloucester cattle in the orchard took an interest too!
Holly and mistletoe were popular – we should have cut more, and freezers are now well supplied with locally reared meat. The Old Spot burgers particularly popular and one kid has since asked Father Christmas for more of those sausage rolls!
Already planning for a bigger and better one in 2023!!
Big Apple, the orchard association for the Much Marcle area, is holding its annual Harvestime weekend on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th October.
Nine venues are ready to welcome visitors to Much Marcle over the two days.
The venues have plenty to offer visitors. There will be opportunities to enjoy the local orchards, see, hear and smell cider and perry being made and taste and buy many different varieties of apples, local ciders, perries and apple juices.
Watch us talk about the work we do restoring traditional orchards in Gloucestershire on BBC Gardeners World. Over the last 50 years Gloucestershire has lost over 75% of these amazing habitats. Here at Orchard Revival we prune and re-plant these traditional orchards and more importantly share orchard skills so others can do it too.
The segment was filmed in the beautiful Pocketts Orchard, in Whitminster where we help lead orchard restoration for the Cotswold Canals Connected project and the Gloucestreshire Wildlife Trust as part of the Stroudwater canal restoration.
This year’s apple celebrations at Days Cottage will be on Sunday 16 October 2022, 1-4pm.
Apple Day Afternoon with Dave Kaspar and Helen Brent-Smith, www.dayscottage.co.uk Upton Lane, Brookthorpe, GL4 0UT.
Mulled apple juice, lovely apple and pear themed cakes, family event, music, heritage fruit to try and buy, rare trees for sale. Buy juice, cider and perry from unsprayed fruit. Now is a chance to chat to Dave and Helen about your orchard/fruit questions. But they do get busy!
Browse their mature and young orchards, bring a picnic. Walk around the Museum Orchard of rare Gloucestershire varieties. Maps available (please return). Signage will be out.
Bring a few representative samples for identification and a small amount (two carrier bags) for juicing at the farm. Small charge for the latter. Only a small number of representative samples please!
One way system in operation. Yurt and roundhouse. Forest garden to explore.
They also run a rolling programme of Pruning, Grafting and Bud-Grafting workshops here in winter and summer. These will be advertised on the Days Cottage and GOT websites.
Dave Kaspar identifying apples at his and Helen’s Days Cottage Apple Afternoon in October.