Apple Day

apple display

Apple Day 2021
Sunday 10th October. 12-4pm

We hope that our 21st anniversary will be a full on celebration with all the joys of juicing, cakes, chutneys, activities, advice about your fruit trees, harvesting and a time to meet with friends and hang out in the autumn sunshine. And apples to buy.

In 2020 we were badly affected by frost, which depleted our harvest considerably. This year again we saw frost damage to some blossoms, but the harvest is much better - though moderate rather than bumper. 

With only two weeks to go we are confident that we won't be affected by any new Covid-19 restrictions. 
This is an outdoor event. We will have with some shelter, but no sides on marquees - to maintain plenty of air circulation. We will ask people to queue respectfully, and will limit clusters of people around activities, so more time to admire the trees while you are waiting for the stalls. 


Call for Volunteers (and other help...)

Can you make a cake for Apple Day?

The cake stall is always a popular part of Apple Day, but we rely on volunteer contributions to get the range and the number of cakes needed to satisfy our eager crowd. And this year we are celebrating our 21st birthday, so cakes seem all the more important. If you would like to bake for us please email and we will send a brief outline. Basically we are looking for cakes, biscuits etc using apples, pears, plums or English soft fruit...
We look forward to hearing your ideas.

Chutney - have you got any spare jars? 

In order to make the most of the apple harvest, be it using windfalls or just preserving fruit that won't store,  we make a lot of chutney. However, we are short of jars (we prefer to recycle rather than buy new) and would welcome any donations.  Ideally we would prefer that they arrive to us without the labels - these need to be removed before we sterilise them and sometimes they are just too hard to get off.

And while we are talking about chutney, if you want to get involved with making some please talk to us. Or if you have a favourite recipe you'd like to recommend to us please get in touch. We'd welcome new inspiration. 

Do you know of spare apples for juicing?

The fresh apple juice we produce at Apple Day is another firm favourite. To make enough this year we will need to find contributions from outside the orchard. Do you have a glut of apples at home? Have you seen a tree in your neighbourhood that doesn't get picked? Get in touch with any thoughts and we will discuss collection. 

Volunteering on the Day 

We need volunteers on the day to help with setting up, helping to run activities and stalls and with packing away at the end. You can volunteer for a part of the day if you like. 



We do not have card facilities at the orchard. 

We know that everyone has become used to cashless transactions over the last year or so...but ....
please bring CASH for your cakes, apples, chutney, juice etc. (and of course your donations too!!)

Thank you. 


Getting to Apple Day 2021

If you are planning to drive to Apple Day on 10th October you should be aware of road closures on Mill Lane. The junction with Nelson Street is now open, but the gasworks are moving towards Manchester Road. You will need to approach Bowling Park Drive from either Wakefield Road (you can access Prospect Rd form the roundabout  - the road closure on the signs is after the turning up Hall Lane), or Manchester Road above Mill Lane.  

Pedestrians and cyclists have access through the roadworks. 

See more information here


Apple Day 2020 - something different!

We are celebrating Bradford Apple Day’s 20th Anniversary this year so hoped to have an extra special extravagant event, but…..
(There is always next year for a coming of age party).

However, we can still offer visits to the orchard for small household/bubble groups and individuals. We are still to finalise exactly how this will look, but it will be an opportunity to visit the orchard, purchase locally grown produce (both fresh and preserved) and talk to volunteers about the orchard. There will be a charge for visits which will include receiving a small hamper with a few apples and chutney or jam, and maybe some cake. We are afraid that we will not be able to offer hot drinks this year, but please feel free to bring a flask if you fancy a drink while you are with us.

Sorry not to be specific with a cost yet; essentially it will be in exchange for produce, but we do not want to handle change for individual items purchased. Our main motivation for inviting people to the orchard is to give you the chance for a visit to the orchard, and a chance to buy local produce, with any income generated going towards the costs of orchard maintenance and the rent - so this is also an opportunity for you to support the orchard to ensure it is in good condition next year and into the future.

Our crop was severely affected by frost this year so there are not many apples available and this will be your only chance to purchase any. We have made a variety of jams and chutneys with fruit that we have already harvested. A list of these will be ready soon. We won't be doing any market stalls this autumn. 

[We anticipate we will ask for £10 per adult, but of course we will discuss reduction for groups and families].

We are anticipating this will be a very personalised service so we will discuss details with people who book a slot. 

If you would like to come along please ring 07970 621732 to discuss what is on offer. 

You will need to complete the booking form  before attending. You will need to email it to [email protected]

Choose from the following dates, selecting one slot, either 12.00 – 1.30, or 1.30 – 3pm.  
Sunday 11th October
Thursday 15th October
Tuesday 20th October

If these dates get booked up we will try and add extra dates or extend the sessions. If you are keen to come along but cannot make these dates then drop us a line and we will explore if an alternative is possible. 
Your booking will only be confirmed once you have heard back from us. 

If the number of positive cases continues to rise or we feel it is not sensible to run these sessions, we will cancel, even if this is at short notice. We will discuss this with anyone who has booked to visit.

Thanks for your interest and your ongoing support. 


Apple Day 2019, Sunday 13th October at Bowling Community Orchard 12 noon till 4 pm.
The weather forecast had been pretty bad, and we spent most of Saturday afternoon trying to create adequate cover for the apples and kitchen spaces. As it turned out it wasn't as bad as we feared; damp but only occasional downpours!
And we were pleased that around about 300 people ventured out to join in with the activities.
Of course one of the major activities is cake eating, and thanks to the volunteers who donated cakes, there was a great array on offer.  All proceeds from the cake sales go towards paying for the marquee, toilet, publicity and allotment rent, so rest assured eating all those cakes is vital! 
We were also delighted to welcome back Wrapture and their falapples and other tasty offerings.
Lots of people got stuck in with making the fresh apple juice; mashing and pressing apples to create a delicious fresh juice.
Chutneys, jams and pasteurised juice from the orchard were on sale, proceeds going towards the cost of our new efficient apple press. Brian sold all his honey and we sold just under 100 kg for apples (and lots of people admired the straw bale apple store). 
Martin took on a more roving role today; next year we will make him an umbrella, so some such, to make sure people can find him with their horticultural queries. Anne, with of her display of apples in the gazebo, was on hand to identify apples which people had brought along. 
BEES ran some art activities, always a challenge when it is wet, and Yorkshire Wildlife Trust made creatures out of conkers and other natural materials. 
We didn't quite cover our costs again this year, but we wish to retain this as a free event, relying on donations rather than an entrance fee. Perhaps we need to explore some funding for 2020 - this will be our 20th anniversary so it would be good to acknowledge this land mark. 

The most essential requirement is to recruit enough volunteers (we didn't fill all the roles this year which leaves an unsustainable load on some people), so please to get in touch if you can help out. Many thanks. 


Entrance to allotments and orchard is on Bowling Park Drive, large gates opposite the factory entrance. You cannot access the orchard from the park. 




Apple Day 2017 was held at Bowling Park Community Orchard on Sunday 15th October; 12 noon until 4pm

Another successful event which attracted over 500 people to take part in the range of activities that represent all elements of the orchard. 

Food is always an important factor and the cake stall was busy throughout, selling donated cakes to raise funds to cover the cost of the hire of the marquee and toilet. Wrapture were selling their Falapples, freshly cooked in our improved kitchen shelter. 

The fruit press is always a popular activity for people to participate in, and the resulting juice is impressive. A range of chutneys, jams, sauerkraut, honey, vinegar and dried fruit were sold, as were a good selection of the apples from the trees. 

Martin was kept busy answering horticultural queries, and Anne continued to identify people’s unnamed apples.  

Yorkshire wildlife Trust and Groundwork complemented the art activities which we ran, engaging people with the fruit growing and wildlife in the orchard. 

See you again next year? Let’s hope the weather is as glorious then. 

This year we benefited from the Operation Orchard Grant for Postcode Local Trust to support coordination and publicity of the event. 

There are a few photos here





We had an enjoyable wassail in January 2017. We have written a short report here

We did it again in January 2018...




Bradford Council (Commissioning Service; YMCA), BMDC Logo



Ideas for preparing your Appley picnics: and check out the recipe page 

Apple Day 2013 Menu consisted of
Savoury Options  

Autumn Vegetable Tagine
Tart & Tangy Pinto Bean Stew, both served with bread.
Blue Cheese & Apple Tart
Cheese & Apple Tart 
A savoury vegan pie 
Ploughmans or peanut butter sandwiches

The sweet selection 

Apple Gingerbread
Apple Crumble Slice
Plum Crumble slice
Apple & lemon curd tarts
Rhubarb & Apple flapjack
Apple & Ginger cake
Chocolate & Apple cake
Plum & Almond cake
Apple, sultana & cider slices
Apple & marmalade cake
Pear upside down cake


Apple day is a celebration of the diversity of our fruit heritage.
Only a handful of apple varieties are available in the shops, yet over 6000 varieties have been grown in the past. Nearly 2000 apples are grown at the national collection at the Brogdale Horticultural Trust in Kent.

Common Ground, a national charity that encourages people to recognise the distinctivenes of 'the place', instigated Apple Day in 1990. It is now an established date in the festive calendar and is celebrated annually on or near 21st October. The apple was chosen as an iconic symbol for all the fruit and nuts that are grown in this country.




Apple Day Report 2008

Appley Cafe 2013

Operation Orchard