Apple Day 2015

Saturday October 10th 2015 - Bigger and Better!!!

Report by Stephanie

What a great success and wonderful fun the RHSO Apple Day was last Saturday on the 10th of October!

The weather was very kind and the turnout by the community was the largest the Orchard has ever seen. Many people and families came out to help pick the apples, read about the history of the nursery, enjoy delicious cakes (baked by a fantastic team of volunteers), teas and coffees, and freshly pressed apple juice on our old fashioned little fruit press by the awesome and tireless Sawbridgeworth Scouts. We were also so fortunate to have the very talented Leventhorpe Folk band and the Phoenix Ukulele Club play for us through the afternoon (such a pleasure to see the children dancing amongst the trees!). The Heritage fruit tasting was also enjoyed and helpful to those wanting to 'try before they pick' for their own table. A perk you do not get in supermarkets! Peter Laws from the Fruit ID project of the East of England Apples and Orchards Project was there to help people identify unknown fruit that was growing in their garden and surrounds and gave suprising answers to a large number of strange fruits. It was wonderful that Country Markets were also there to bring their locally grown produce and crafts. It added to the lively festival atmosphere.

We are so lucky to have the dedicated volunteers (Rob, Steph, Eugene, Eric, Ruth, Adrienne, Barrie, Nickie, Geoff, Elizabeth, Elisabeth, Hazel, Dave, Dean, Rebecca, Sian, Elena) to set up gazebos (and to take them down and return!), run the various information points and tents, from collecting pickers and buckets to the expert labelling and stacking of collected apples ready for juicing. It was a brilliant collective and community event that will go from strength to strength with more members of the public joining in on a monthly basis. We would love to hear from you if you are able to help for the next events and for the monthly maintenances. Any amount of time given is truly welcome!

The apples are being juiced as I type this and will be brought back to Sawbridgeworth in the next few days. We will have hundreds of bottles of delicious juice ready to buy within the next few weeks (we need a bit of time to do all the labelling!). We’ll keep you updated on the varieties, where to purchase and price as soon as possible.

Now, let’s think about organising the January Wassail!

Update: 750 bottles of juice were obtained from the apples collected which will be on sale shortly. Thanks for all the hard work!

More pictures from the day can be found in the Events gallery.