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Celebrating 30 years of Apple Day

Raise a glass (cider or apple juice preferably) to Sue Clifford and Angela King who, as Common Ground, initiated Apple Day thirty years ago this year. It was launched with a Covent Garden extravaganza – here’s more photos from the original Covent Garden event.

It took years of nationwide promotion to get people making their own Apple Day on or near October 21st. They have created quite a legacy. The Wikipedia entry for ‘Apple Day’ describes some of the ways different towns and villages are now marking what has become an annual event:

“Apple Day events can be large or small, from apple games in a garden to large village fairs with cookery demonstrations, games, apple identification, juice and cider, gardening advice, and the sale of many hundreds of apple varieties. … By 2000 the day was celebrated in more than 600 events around the United Kingdom. Common Ground describe the day as a way of celebrating and demonstrating that variety and richness matter to a locality and that it is possible to effect change in your place. Common Ground has used the apple as a symbol of the physical, cultural and genetic diversity we should not let slip away. In linking particular apples with their place of origin, they hope that orchards will be recognized and conserved for their contribution to local distinctiveness, including the rich diversity of wild life they support.”

This year has been quieter but Sue and Angela joined with Palida Choir and others to make a song and dance about the 30th anniversary! Their video comes high on Planet Shaftesbury's recommended viewing list at:

Gillian Lewis lives in St James and wrote “We have been apple gathering for some weeks.

Now giving away bagsfull.

Eating puree of Bloody Ploughmans - exquisitely deep pink and scented.

Apple flan too. Apple chutney.

The dogs love apples and pick their own where they can reach.

Blackbirds and jackdaws and buzzards are feasting on the windfalls.

Millennium Green has produced many delicious cookers.

I'm almost certain that briefly I was there at Covent Garden in 1990”

You can listen to more about Apple Day in Shaftesbury on This Is Alfred's 19th, 20th and 21st October podcasts.

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