Orchard Project Celebrations!

30 March 2011

In October 2008, the National Trust embarked upon an Orchard Project to restore and conserve Traditional Orchards across England. With funding from Natural England's Countdown 2010 Biodiversity Action Fund, a whole host of activities were supported, from restoring old orchards to planting new ones, holding celebration events and surveying orchards for their fruit and wildlife. The project was staffed by Project Manager Lucy Cordrey (above right) and Project Officer Kate Merry (above left) at the National Trust.

The Conserving and Restoring Traditional Orchards, England Project operated at 35 National Trust properties and with 23 external partners, including local BAP partnerships, Local Orchard Groups and Schools. Over 700 people benefitted from a programme of training workshops, which covered practical orchard management, apple identification, marketing, fundraising and juice and cider production!

Some project highlights:

  • 2,888 trees of 329 different varieties have been planted
  • Surveys have put a name to 85 previously unknown varieties
  • 1,753 volunteers have clocked up 1,886 days of hard graft
  • 755 people have attended 52 different training workshops
  • 11,528 people have enjoyed 38 public events including Apple Days, Wassails and Plum Festivals
  • 20 orchards have been created
  • Restoration work has been carried out at 82 orchards
  • 88 Wildlife surveys, 12 Fruit surveys and 221 Orchard surveys recorded species, fruit varieties and orchard condition

We have prepared a Project Scrabook which gives a full account of the project's achievements and the strong legacy it leaves behind. You can download it below, or view our short video clip, filmed in the orchards at Killerton Estate in Devon.


Download the Project Scrapbook


Conserving & Restoring Traditional Orchards Project from claire bolitho on Vimeo.