Oxhill News

www.oxhill.com / www.oxhill.org.uk

South Warwickshire, England.

The Oxhill News

January 2010

This months News



WOT to Grow

A Community Orchard for Whatcote, Oxhill & Tysoe

During the summer over 50 village households said they were interested in joining a Community Orchard Scheme and a small group of people came together to prepare a submission for funding support to help kick start the scheme.  The Local Food First Stage Application, part of the Big Lottery Fund, was successful and we have been invited to develop the proposal into a full application.  This is what we said to Local Food as we asked for 43,000 to pump prime the project over its first four years, after which it will become self-sustaining:

Community Orchard & Food Production for Whatcote, Oxhill and Tysoe  WOTtoGROW

Villagers from Whatcote, Oxhill and Tysoe are forming a Trust or Co-operative to share in the production of food for themselves, their families and the community.  Climate change, the carbon footprint offset and food security issues are encouraging the villagers to produce as much food as possible for themselves.

The initial plan is to establish an orchard (top fruit, stone fruit, cane fruit and nuts) then develop small scale salad, vegetable and soft fruit production. Bee-hives will be introduced for pollination whilst the bees provide honey and beeswax to add more environmental and sustainability dimensions to the project.

The harvest will be shared between members, the infirm and Care Homes in the community and the local Cottage Hospital.  Surplus production will be sold to local pub restaurants, shops and directly to non-participating villagers.

Local school children and Warwickshire College students who are from urban backgrounds will be encouraged to use the orchard and related areas for educational and amenity purposes.  It will enable them to connect food to its production, undertake environmental activities and understand sustainability as it relates to them and their futures.  The orchard will also be an amenity for local residents, the WI and other groups who can observe and enjoy the wildlife it will attract.

The initiative is supported by Tysoe and Oxhill Parish Councils, Whatcote Parish Meeting and Transition Town Shipston and its citizens.

Now we have to prepare a detailed business plan and we need your help please.

We would like someone to represent the interests of Oxhill and Upper Tysoe to join Liz Atkinson (Whatcote), Derek Harbour (Oxhill), Sam Littlewood (Middle Tysoe) and Graham Collier (Lower Tysoe) to help prepare the Business Plan, communicate with the village people and recruit interested parties.

Land (1 to 2 acres with access to water) is needed and once offered a Community Interest Company or something similar will have to be formed.

To generate income quickly it is proposed to harvest, press, and bottle and sell pasteurised apple and pear juice made from fruit that is surplus to the requirements of households who have apple and pear trees in their gardens.  If this is of interest to you please let Liz Atkinson (680045 / 07768 166483) Derek Harbour (680676 / 07768 775584), Sam Littlewood (688137) or Graham Collier (680127 / 07889 360133) know.

Next Steps

Once land is offered, a meeting will be arranged for everyone who is interested in the scheme to hear, discuss and agree the Business Plan and the proposed Community Business Structure.

The Full Application will be finalised and submitted.

Further information

If anyone would like to discuss the project in more detail please get in touch with Liz, Derek, Sam or Graham.  They will be delighted to tell you about it.

Graham Collier; E-mail: graham@fraseruk.co.uk

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Last modified: January 01, 2010