Transition town group need volunteers to jam with them

Request for residents to help harvest trees and use fruit to make marmalades and jellies

A group of enviromentally-friendly residents are looking for volunteers who are willing to get themselves in a jam.

Transition Town Kensal to Kilburn need more people to help harvest trees in the borough’s back gardens and turn the fruit into jellies, marmalades and jams.

The project was set up by member Michael Stuart, of Christchurch Avenue, Kilburn, who wanted to stop fresh, local, produce being wasted.

Mr Stuart, said: “This autumn Kensal to Kilburn fruit harvesters will pick one ton of apples and pears from local back gardens to save it from waste.

“I want to find all the local jam and chutney makers and create a virtual jam factory in Kilburn – a network of cooks turning out jars of beautiful preserves.

“The preserves will be shared between cooks, pickers and tree owners and we’ll be selling some to raise money for local charities and communities.”

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On average, one in four gardens has a fruit tree. Many of these go unpicked which means fresh local food goes to waste.

As well as making jam, volunteers will be shown how to pick fruit, prune trees and make juice.

Mr Stuart said: “Farmers put in so much time and effort into growing their fruit and veg. But amazingly, people in London have it already growing in their back gardens.

“We really want to raise awareness about how much food is wasted every year and encourage people to pick their own.”

On Friday (August 19), the group will be harvesting 50g of crab apples in Nelson Close, on the South Kilburn Estate, from 2pm.

The following day, the fruit will be turned into a delicious crab apple jelly at Salusbury School, in Salusbury Road, Queen’s Park.

Mr Stuart said: “Everyone is welcome including children of course. Just turn up and look for the blue tarpaulin.”

Transition Town Kensal to Kilburn, which promotes low-carbon greener living, was set up two years ago and now has more than 500 members.

The network of eco-minded people covers Kensal Green, Kensal Rise, Queen’s Park and Kilburn.

For more information call Mr Stuart on 0781 357 4699 or email