We first conceived of and created the orchard in 2003. In the intervening years the trees have blossomed and become fruitful but there are signs of age within the infrastructure. Operation Orchard will give us the resources to replace worn out benches, shelters and paths, as well as plant more nectar rich flowers, build a storage shed for the apple crop and improve our knowledge of preserving and cooking with the apples.
We hope to improve our links with local community groups and generally increase awareness that organic apples are being grown in Bradford, and the crop is there for people to share. We will be working with local schools to give pupils a first hand experience of the life cycle of the fruit trees, and the wildlife associated with the habitats in the orchard.
We will invite guests to support the cooking sessions and we plan to visit other projects to learn about other people's orchard endeavors. We very much welcome suggestions if you have ideas you would like us to explore collectively. We will also update the management plan for the orchard. A recent review exposed how out of date it is - it talks about trees, grass, paths etc, but doesn't mention management of the fruit crop!
Operation Orchard has been made possible by a grant from Postcode Local Trust, so we are very thankful to the players of People's Postcode Lottery which has made this possible.
Our ambition is that, once this injection of care and attention has been implemented, future costs in the Orchard will be covered by revenue generated through apple and chutney sales.
We will list the series of activities below, but you can also read about the orchard and get directions on the orchard page
- Saturday 16th September 10am-1pm
- Sunday 1st October 11am-2pm
- Saturday 21st October 10am - 1pm
- Wednesday 4th October 4pm- 7pm at Culture Fusion - we will be preparing chutneys etc for our market stall at Shipley Alternative on Saturday 7th October, 11am - 3pm
- Wednesday 8th November 4-7pm at Culture Fusion. We are pleased to welcome Plenty Preserves to lead this session. A chance to ask questions and generally improve knowledge about techniques. Please book a place.
- Friday 17th November 10am -3.30pm at Culture Fusion - more chutney and fruit cheese making ready for market stall at Shipley Alternative on 2nd December.
- Friday 2nd March 2018, 11am - at Culture Fusion. Making savoury stews and buns.
- Saturday 28th October 2017- Old Slenningford Farm. We will join in their juicing day and hope to learn and be inspired by their set up. Booking essential. We will leave Culture Fusion at 10am and anticipate being back by late afternoon.
- Friday 27th April 2018- Those Plant People; garden and nursery visit to learn about and inspiration for increasing nectar sources at the orchard, and general tips on cultivation and preserving the crop. Read how we got on here
- Apple Day 2017; Sunday 15th October 12 noon - 4pm
- Blossom Open Days; Friday 11th May, 11am-3pm, and Saturday 19th May 10am-1pm.
Here are some links to other pages in the website.
Practical tasks at the orchard - upcoming sessions and reports of work done can be read on the orchard page. (scroll to the bottom of the page). We have photos at the orchard, of our visit to Old Slenningford Farm, and of our visit to Those Plant People.