Brent harvesting groups complete biggest ever fruit picking mission

Young John Muir Award Members (Pic credit: Barn Hill Conservation Group)

Young John Muir Award Members (Pic credit: Barn Hill Conservation Group) - Credit: Archant

Fruit harvesting groups in Brent have completed their biggest challenge ever by successfully tackling a vast 900-tree orchard in Kingsbury.

Fruit harvesting groups in Brent joined forces for their biggest challenge (Pic credit: Jonathan Gol

Fruit harvesting groups in Brent joined forces for their biggest challenge (Pic credit: Jonathan Goldberg) - Credit: Archant

The ‘big pick’ organised by Kensal to Kilburn Fruit Harvesters, Willesden Fruit Harvesters and Mapesbury Residents’ Association (MapRA) Pickers, saw them collect 583kgs of apples and plums which would have gone to waste on Saturday.

The 52 pickers will be able to taste the fruits of their labour when they enjoy a delicious glass of juice made from the apples and plums at Roe Green Walled Garden Open Day and Queen’s Park Day.

Local schools will also receive generous juice donations.

Michael Stuart, who co-ordinates picks for Kensal to Kilburn Fruit Harvesters, said: “It was amazing. We usually harvest from one tree in local back gardens so to have volunteers picking from among 900 trees was like being in a sweet shop!”

A young fruit picker (Pic credit: Jonathan Goldberg)

A young fruit picker (Pic credit: Jonathan Goldberg) - Credit: Archant


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Gerry Weston, who organises picks for Mapesbury Residents’ Association, added: “It was great to co-operate with so many other groups. It was a good social event.”

Fryent Country Park has more than 1,000 fruit trees in all, largely planted and maintained by Barn Hill Conservation Group over the past 30 years, with some support from Brent Council.

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The John Muir Award members, Barn Hill’s young conservation volunteers took part in the picking mission.

David McClements, from the Barn Hill Conservation Group said: “The youngsters did a brilliant job in challenging conditions.”

Lat year the three harvesting groups’ bumper collected three tonnes of apples, pears and plums last year.

Some were donated to local schools and charities, while others were made into juices, chutney, jam and wine.

To get involved email kensaltokilburnharvesters@gmail.com , willesdenharvesters@gmail.com or MapRA email contact@mapra.org.

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