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CARHAMPTON COMMUNITY ORCHARD (Registered Charity 1072570)
WHERE ARE WE ?
Our small fruit orchard (0.6 ha of Crown land) is on the busy A39 in the middle of Carhampton, between Williton and Minehead. It is the last of many village orchards.
In 1989 Crown Agents sought planning permission to build on it. As a result of thunderous opposition the Crown withdrew its application and by 1997 a steering group had a management plan, a 25 year lease with the Crown, and Charity status. Carhampton Community Orchard was born. We are grateful for seed corn money from now defunct Rural Action, from Shell Better Britain, from County Councillor funds, Masons and several private givers. We are supported by the Parish Council’s annual grant of £250 that enables us to pay our rent to the Crown.
During our fourteen years we have planted over 40 trees of mainly local varieties of apple; some pear, some plum and a Nottingham Medlar. The sward is grazed regularly by a small-holder and topped by machine when necessary. We have replaced three out of four perimeter fences and planted a mixed traditional hedge on the long side which is already taking over from the pre-existing elm hedge.
We are careful to leave dead wood for insects to enjoy.
We are in contact with Orchards Live and with our neighbouring Community Orchards at Old Cleeve, Dunster and Porlock.
Two or three commercial green grocers are pleased to sell our fruit which has the advantage of being chemical free if not strictly “organic”.
OUR STATED AIMS:
1. The conservation and preservation of the flora and fauna of the orchard for the benefit of the public.
2. The advancement of education of the public.
We Wassail annually on January 17th (old Twelfth Night).
We run an Apple Day jointly with the Village Hall in late October and are able to display and sell a range of fruit, and apple juice which we press with our own equipment.
We run juicing days for members of the public and public pruning days.
The Somerset Wildlife Group run butterfly and bug hunts in the Orchard and the local bee division has established a cottage hive there.
Fine timber from dead trees is expertly turned and sold in aid of orchard funds.
Information about the Orchard may be had from
Secretary Keith Jones (01643 821620) e-mail: email@example.com