…Heav’n’s sweetest blessing, Hail
Be thou the copious Matter of my song
And thy choice Nectar, on which always waits
Laughter, and sport, and care beguiling wit,
And friendship, chief Delight of Human Life.
An extract from Philips’ ‘Cyder Poem‘.
Taken from ‘Ciderland‘ by James Crowden
The week leading up to our pressing day on Oct 18th was spent scrumping for apples in and around the south Glos region. Blessed with fine weather and armed with buckets,sacks, sticks and a hearty flask of coffee, we set off to various corners of the county to collect cider apples. We had great success around Oldbury in Severn, collecting from various roadside trees and stumbling upon a number of old forgotten orchards that slowly revealed themselves from over the tops of hedges. The children had a great time collecting from a small orchard in Oldland Common and myself Tim and Duncan had a hugely productive morning at Jean Grudging;s Orchard in Tytherington, where we were treated to an elevenses, of tea, homemade cake and a glass of Matthew Riddles cider. As you’d imagine this sent us back to the Orchard with a spring in our step and all in all we collected over 20 bags of prime Cider Apples.