A Living Record - Kirkby's Fruit Trees

    This project is the latest in a series of joint ventures where the history group is working alongside other local groups.

    A Living Record aims to preserve and record the heritage of Kirkby's fruit growing past. Our area was well known for its apple, plum and pear trees as well as gooseberries and other soft fruits. 

    However as the need for more housing, bigger roads and smaller gardens, the loss of the traditional orchards and small holdings has meant many of the older varieties of fruit trees have disappeared from the area altogether.

    Small orchards have become small housing estates and the hedgerows which accommodated individual trees have been cleared for fencing. The lifespan of an apple tree is around 100 years and if left to its own devices will revert to wild rootstock.

    So the Kirkby Fruit Pickers came up with the wonderful idea of gathering together cuttings from the few isolated trees scattered in gardens and hedgerows and grafting them onto rootstock to ensure they survive. The PCC has agreed to the creation of an orchard area within the millennium garden for these trees - where the story of its discovery and some local history will allow people to learn more about Kirkby's fruit growing past.

    If you want to more or be involved contact us or Chris Simmonds from the Kirkby Fruit Project.