News Stories

Halton welcomes Community Orchard sown by locals
20 August 2014

The Halton Village Millennium Green Trust Action Group in Cheshire secured a £7,852 grant from Biffa Award; a multi-million pound fund that helps to build communities and transform lives through awarding grants to community and environmental projects across the UK.


Funded under Biffa Award’s Recreation theme, the group’s Onwards and Upwards project involved local volunteers and young people in the regeneration of an existing Wildflower Meadow and creation of a Community Orchard.


The recently completed project included the removal of some large sycamore trees, raising the crowns on the remaining trees and the removal of ivy and nettles to let in additional light and create space.  Heritage varieties of apple, pear, plum and quince were planted in late February, whilst March and April saw the sowing of a large variety of native bulbs and woodland plants. Though the tree work was carried out by professionals the clearing and replanting was undertaken by a team of local volunteers and children.  Since the planting of the Orchard a group of volunteers, the ‘Digging Dream Team’ meets each week to continue with planting and maintaining the Orchard.


Roland Marchal, Volunteer, Halton Village Millennium Green Trust – Action Group, said:


“It is great being involved in transforming a derelict piece of land into a community orchard, which will hopefully provide a habitat for bees, butterflies and insects.  It will bring pleasure to people and future generations and I am particularly pleased that children from the Brownies and a local school are also involved.”


Gillian French, Biffa Award Programme Manager, said:


Projects like this are incredibly important for local communities, which is why we look to invest in them.  The Onwards and Upwards project will provide additional habitats for native flora and fauna and encourage continued community involvement and we are pleased to support it.”