Our recent Press Release just made the local paper! See short item at KBT%20Fryent%20pick%2024%20Sept%2015.pdf.
The release in full:
Brent Fruit Groups' Record Harvest at Fryent Country Park
Fruit harvesting groups in Brent joined forces for their largest pick yet on Sunday 6th September - a 900 tree orchard at Fryent Country Park in Kingsbury. The big pick was organised by Kensal to Kilburn Fruit Harvesters, together with the Barn Hill Conservation Group, Headstart Scheme, Willesden Fruit Harvesters and Mapesbury Residents' Association (MapRA) Pickers to gather fruit that would otherwise go to waste.
Thirty people of all ages took part and picked a record 625 kg of apples. Much of the fruit will be going to make juice at Queen's Park day on September 13th and some was given to the Salvation Army. Hawkes Cider will be turning some of the apples into local cider.
Janey McAllester, who co-ordinates picks for Kensal to Kilburn Fruit Harvesters and who organised the big pick, says, “Huge thanks to Iceland in Cricklewood for supplying the big plastic boxes we used to transport the fruit around - without them it would have been logistically very difficult - and to their driver Paul who delivered them to the park out of his working hours.”
Viv Stein of Willesden Fruit Harvesters says, “It was great to involve people of all ages and abilities from across Brent to come together and pick. We had some of the 4th Brondesbury Girl Guides group with us. One girl told us that before the pick she didn't like eating apples, but after tasting ones picked straight from the tree she loves them now, and didn't realise how much fun it would be to harvest fruit!
“We also had a young woman living with dementia who found the event very therapeutic.”
The Barn Hill Conservation Group, who maintain Fryent Country Park on a voluntary basis, also picked a further 200kg of apples for their Open Day at Roe Green Walled Garden on Saturday 12th September from 11 am to 4pm.
Fryent Country Park has over a thousand fruit trees in all in linear orchards, largely planted and maintained by the Barn Hill Conservation Group over the past thirty years, with some support from Brent Council. The orchard is registered organic and has 28 varieties of heritage apples including the Pinner Seedling, discovered in Harrow in 1834 and grafted onto root stock by the National Fruit Collection at Brogdale.
This is the second year that the three harvesting groups have picked fruit at Fryent Country Park. Last year they harvested 591 kg of apples and plums. The groups pick local apples, pears and plums which are given to local schools and charities, and made into delicious juice, chutney, jam and wine. This reduces waste by harvesting fruit that would otherwise fall to the ground and rot in local gardens.