A community orchard is one where the fruit is available for free for anyone in the community. Transition Buxton runs a Dispersed Community Orchard spread over 15 sites around Buxton. When we first decided we’d set one up in Buxton we thought in terms of a single location and spent a lot of time looking for a suitable site in the town, to no avail. Then we realised that a Dispersed Community Orchard was a far better idea. Not only are suitable small plots much easier to find, and we can keep expanding the orchard for ever as new sites become available, but a lot more people can benefit from having an orchard nearby. Last but not least the responsibility for looking after the trees can more easily be spread around, with a small team of people taking care of each site.
We started planting in earnest in early 2011, and have added to the orchard every winter since then. We are now at the end of the planting season for 2022/23. This season we have planted 21 fruit trees, adding to four existing sites and starting a new site. This season our thanks go to all our volunteers as usual but we’d also like to add special thanks to Burbage Institute Charity who allowed us to plant eight trees on the recreation ground and HPBC who gave us a grant to help with trees from their Community Climate Change and Nature Action Fund.
We now, in 2023, we have over 100 trees in the orchard. The majority are apple but we also have pear, cherry, greengage, plum and damson. We’re trialing different varieties to see which do best in the Buxton climate.
You can see where they all are on this map. Most of the trees have been sponsored by individual donations. Inevitably a few get damaged or die, but we do always replace them as soon as we can.
We are looking for new sites to expand the orchard into in 2023 and beyond so if you have an idea for a possible site, please email us. We also welcome volunteers to join our orchard maintenance team. If you’d like to get involved, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And of course, if we are to keep on expanding the orchard, by planting more trees, we need more sponsors. It costs £25 to provide the tree, stake, tie, guard and a contribution towards ongoing maintenance, and we provide a gift certificate if you wish. You can download the sponsorship form here or, even easier, complete the form below to sponsor immediately.
Latest update 31/03/23