Through a unique partnership with HEINEKEN UK, The Orchard Project works with communities across the UK to help them plant and restore orchards in their neighbourhoods.
We believe that orchards are a powerful way to bring people together to create green spaces and build healthier, happier and more sustainable communities. We are privileged to work with hundreds of committed, inspiring and passionate people who want to make their communities better places to live and work, through the magic of apple and fruit trees.
Through our hubs in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Greater Manchester, Leeds and London, our teams (previously working under the project name, Helping Britain Blossom) forge partnerships with community groups, organisations, and local councils to give them the tools and knowledge they need to nurture and sustain their orchards. We don’t own the orchards, – the local community does.
Our training workshops include:
- Grafting skills
- Pruning techniques
- Pest and disease control
- Orchard design and planning, and
- Planting days.
Why engage with community orchards?
The local orchardists we support and work with tell us that their orchards
- Help to build community resilience and community cohesion
- Reduce social isolation by giving people a reason to come together
- Encourage volunteering
- Promote awareness of sustainable development and providing outdoor classrooms
- Create opportunities for learning new skills including horticulture and community engagement
- Improve health and wellbeing for local residents through outdoor activity and promoting healthy eating
- Contribute towards tackling climate change
- Enhances the local environment and biodiversity
- Catalyse momentum around creating and protecting green spaces.
Sustainability is at the core of our projects and activities; from the long term sustainability of the orchards, to building resilience and skills in local communities to maintain them, and of course the environmental benefits that the orchards bring. We aim to help community orchardists leave a legacy of orchards across the country that will continue to benefit local people for decades to come
HEINEKEN recognises a responsibility to enable the communities in which it lives, works and operates to be more sustainable. Orchards are at the heart of its business. Around 30% of all the apples grown in the UK go in to making its ciders and it sources around 1.6 billion apples every year from around 10,000 acres of orchards – most of which are in Herefordshire.