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National Apple Day 21st October 2023

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Apple Day is an annual celebration of all things apple, held in October. It is celebrated on 21 October, or nearest weekend to it and luckily this year it falls on a Saturday, today!

The celebration doesn't have a long tradition – the first was held in 1990 by Common Ground at an event in Covent Garden. Common Ground is a UK charity and lobby group which aims to promote 'local distinctiveness'.

In 1990 they founded Apple Day as a focus for celebration of the hundreds of apple varieties which are ignored in favour of a handful of supermarket-friendly varieties. But in the wider context, Common Ground seeks to promote local produce with the apple standing as its symbol for the diversity of local foods. Common Ground is keen to highlight the provenance and traceability of our foods.

Find out more about Common Ground here.

Apple Day in Somerset celebrates the apple harvest and, of course, the art of cider-making. Apple-themed activities include orchard tours and cider tasting, on which subject, Somerset is home to a variety of heritage apples, each with its own part to play in the taste and flavours of our ciders. Some of the more common heritage varieties found here are:

  • Dabinett
  • Kingston Black
  • Somerset Redstreak
  • Yarlington Mill

I'm sure your local cider-maker will be pleased to explain what these varieties bring to the mix and indeed how they fare as a single variety cider.

The National Trust is holding an Apple Day at Coleridge Cottage, normal venue admission fees apply but the apple day celebration is a free event. Find out more at their website here.

At Kingsdon Lacy, another National Trust site, you can see their ancient apple press in action and sample some of their own juice. Again, the National Trust website has details.

This year Sheppeys Cider is hosting an Apple Day event with a chance to learn about cider with their guided tour – visit their website to book tickets.

Our local cider makers will no doubt be pleased to see you today (and any day tbh) but editor@curryrivel can't find any special celebrations taking place more locally. Perhaps if you are reading this and you do have an event planned (Burrow Hill, Harry's, Bere Cider to name but a few) let know and be added to the list.

That's all for today folks. Ed is off to make an apple pie.

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