Overseal, Croft Orchard
Overseal Parish Council devised a project that brought together a number of different groups and organisations to create an orchard that commemorates military personnel from both First and Second World Wars. Fruit trees, all pre-twentieth century varieties, were planted to mark the loss to individual families and to the village.
Croft Orchard is in the heart of the village and was formerly a meadow that had been partially developed for housing and was owned by South Derbyshire District Council who were keen to see the open space used by the community. With partial funding from the National Forest, along with additional funds from the parish and district councils, 31 trees in total were planted and public footpaths across the site were surfaced to encourage access all around the year.
The actual planting was done by volunteers over two seasons – the WW1 trees in 2014 and WW2 in 2015.
The village even held their first ever wassail in the orchard at the end of January 2016 with a specially written wassail song, with a wonderful turn out from the local community.
October 2016 sees the first ever Overseal Apple Day which will include the unveiling of a commemorative stone carved by artist Gary Williamson, funded by the village’s gala committee.