The Three Counties Traditional Orchard Project now has its own dedicated website. To view it, click here.
With their tall fruit trees standing in pasture, traditional orchards are a much loved part of the Three Counties landscape. For centuries now they have been bound up in the lives and livelihoods of our local communities,providing us with the inspiration for food, music, poetry, art and dance.
They are special places for wildlife too. Their ancient sites have often been unchanged for centuries and their hedges, pastures and trees provide the perfect conditions for many plants and animals, some of them endangered.
Sadly though, up to 80% have been lost in recent years, sometimes because of development but mainly due to neglect. Unlike woodlands orchards are man made and need people to manage them if they are to survive.The Three Counties Traditional Orchard Project is aiming to restore some of these traditional orchards across the Three Counties – Gloucestershire, Worcestershire and Herefordshire – by training a pool of volunteers to help look after local orchards in their area.
In our first year we’re going to be focussing on the areas around:
- Whitbourne and Breinton in Herefordshire
- Alfrick , Tenbury Wells and the Vale of Evesham in Worcestershire
- Gorsley, Ross on Wye and Longney in Gloucestershire
We’re especially keen to hear from potential volunteers or orchard owners living around these areas, but anyone can join in. We need people to carry out practical work and to get involved with orchard history and heritage. Just a few hours each year could help us make all the difference and in exchange we’ll provide training, equipment, support and enthusiasm along with tea and coffee and good company.
So if you’re a wildlife enthusiast, like libraries,can wield a bow saw, make jelly or jam, love cider and perry or have orchard tales to tell we’d love to hear from you!
If you would like more information or are interested in being involved in this project as an orchard owner, volunteer, expert or in any other way, please contact Karen at the Malvern Hills AONB Unit on email@example.com or 01684 560616