David Warburton MP with members of the Clifton-Brown family at West Bradley Orchards
MP David Warburton has opened a series of Pick Your Own weekends at West Bradley Orchards in the heart of Somerset, dubbed the home of British cider.
West Bradley is one of the few orchards in the West of England to offer the opportunity to visit a working apple farm and select your own produce.
One of only three dessert apple orchards in Somerset and spread over 70 acres, West Bradley has been growing apples commercially for more than a century and sells cider apples, dessert apples, pears and walnuts. It is also home to well-known cider brand Orchard Pig.
David Warburton, MP for Somerton and Frome, said: “Once again, it really was fabulous to visit West Bradley Orchards and be able to launch this year’s very busy Pick Your Own season. It’s always such a great occasion and I’d highly recommend it for a taste of the great outdoors, a lot of fun and a bit of a taste of the best fruit around, too!
“Again, I’ve been stunned by the great work that goes on at the Orchards — their scientific approach combined with overwhelming energy and enthusiasm. As ever, the apples are perfect. I couldn’t recommend it more for a fantastic family visit.”
The Clifton-Brown family, owners of West Bradley Orchards, invite visitors to bring a picnic, take a walk through the orchards, press apples to make fresh juice, and enjoy a family day out. There is a fantastic selection of more than 15 eating and cooking apples to choose from and three delicious pear varieties, plus honey from eight bee hives kept on the farm.
Edward Clifton-Brown, who has been running the orchards for 30 years, said: “We’re delighted with this year’s crop. Despite a tough frost earlier in the year, which resulted in less fruit, the quality is unaffected. In fact, for a lot of our varieties it’s the best ever!
“We’ve got some super varieties to pick from, including bright red Lord Lambourne apples, juicy Russets and ever-popular Cox’s, plus Comice and Concord pears.
“The apple press proved incredibly popular last weekend and many of our visitors left with bottles of freshly pressed juice. We look forward to welcoming more visitors for the remaining weekend as the apples finish ripening on the trees.”
The final weekend takes place from Friday, September 29, until Sunday, October 1, from 10am until 5pm.