'Think apple pies, cider, apple juice, plum puddings, perry, damson fool, benches to enjoy the spring blossom from' think local honey, small pond full of dragon flies' think Kirk Langley school children celebrating and harvesting natures bounty''.

 

In response to a note posted through letter boxes in Kirk Langley, thirty interested people attended an initial meeting in mid January 2009, and more telephoned to express support for the idea of a Community Orchard in Kirk Langley. Soon after that a meeting was held 'on site', in the Lodge Farm field closest to Kirk Langley village, just off Flagshaw Lane. Again, attendance was very encouraging, and a committee was formed and much support offered.

It is hoped that the orchard will have many types of fruit and nut trees, including new and old varieties, and be surrounded by a fruitful hedgerow. There will be a pond, an open area and some seating. It will be a tranquil place for relaxing, playing and socialising. It will support wildlife in a variety of habitats and it will be a place for children to learn about the natural world and to enjoy being outdoors. It will offer opportunities for people to work together to establish and maintain it and harvest its produce, and it will be linked to the organic farm on which it stands. It will be accessible on foot, being close to the village centre and the primary school.

Progress:

  • An outer fence has been put up by a working party of volunteers, and existing stiles have been repaired to improve access.
  • A plan for the layout of the orchard has been drawn up.
  • A hedge has been planted within the outer fence, and the hedge plants are doing well.
  • The first trees were bought by Meynell Langley Gardens, and were planted and staked at the launch event.
  • The then Lord Lieutenant for Derbyshire, Mr John Bather, attended the Launch, which was a great success.
  • A bank account has been opened and many kind donations received.
  • An inner fence and tree guards have been completed.
  • A 'corridor' of fruit bushes has been planted to complement the fruit trees.
  • A planning application has been submitted for a wildlife pond area near the orchard.
  • The Community Orchard has been the venue for several sociable occasions - barbecues, planting days, maintenance working parties and three National Big Lunch events.
  • A log seating area has been established, and three simple benches installed.



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