Fruit Fair 2013

“I love your event. It’s absolutely terrific.” Comment from passerby

The 2013 Abundance Fruit Day in association with St Michael and All Angels was a great success. The sun shone (most of the time), the apples behaved themselves and everyone seemed to have a lot of fun.

We estimate that we picked and dealt with around a tonne of fruit, mostly apples, with some pears, a few quince trees, redcurrants, mulberries and grapes.

The longest peel was peeled by Imogen at 2m80, smashing our previous record by 65cm. Everyone who peeled over 2m will receive a prize, and we will be contacting you directly.

Apple ID’s can still be handed in to Hack & Veldt on Turnham Green Terrace until 10th October. Bring your labelled apple (your name & email) to Hack & Veldt, along with any further information and Steve Oram from the People’s Trust for Endangered Species will identify what type of apple it is.

Great thanks to the St Michael’s team from Torin Douglas, the parish office team, Ken who organised all the furniture logistics, and Sara Gronmark’s craft team.

The “slaving over a hot cooker” brigade included Marion Casali on chutneys, Ruth Todd and Sarah Hartley on damsons, Cathy Scott Clark on quince cheese, Eileen on toffee apples and the jam workshoppers who made mulberry, apple jelly and redcurrant jelly. All the jams, jellies and chutneys were snapped up.  The tree owners were hugely generous with their fruit, with particular thanks to Nan and John Owen and their nine sumptuous apple trees, and Angela and Richard Dixon with their majestic old trees. The schools and their teachers, children and parents did a magnificent job of picking and processing much of the fruit, and especial congratulations to William Hogarth School and St Peter’s School who ran stalls at the fair full of wonderful tasty things. The fruit pressing team – led by Alan Wadner and Dinis Cruz, with Shane Hartley, Frank Franklin, Jack Hulme, Alex and Luca Casali (only aged 10 but worked for a full grown man or two) – probably have very tired muscles today as it was very hard work, while the bottling duo of Ann Rix and Gill Harding shifted the stuff as fast as it could be made. Gill also set up and ran the preserves stall with great flair, being relieved by Ruth Mayorcas who sprinted to the finishing line with it. Fruit sales were superbly organised as usual by Diana Lea, whose husband Dick washed most of the pressing fruit for the fourth year in a row. Jennie Figaro and Linda Elston who lent a hand everywhere, as they have done for the last three fruit fairs; apple bobbing was expertly run by Kitty Liebreich and Jane Nissen; longest peel by Hannah Levy and Liz Ross.  Home made ice cream made and sold with great style by Antonia Young.

Other essential help was provided by the Chiswick Horticultural Society who donated a prize-winning pumpkin, and the Chiswick House Kitchen Garden several enormous marrows, which Sam’s Brasserie made into a marvellous soup. Grove Park School and Hammersmith Community Garden Association lent us important equipment (display stands, van) and the Hanbury-Williams gave us much-needed apple storage.

The proceeds from the Abundance Fruit Day will go towards rolling out the project to further schools next year, and to other horticultural/educational projects. If anyone has such a project and needs a small amount of funding to get it off the ground, please get in touch.

With many thanks

Sarah Cruz, Karen Liebreich, Karen Wyatt

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