THE ORCHARD CENTRE
Blackwells End, Hartpury GL19 3DB
Gloucestershire based courses and events are held at The Orchard Centre and The Old Dominican Chapel - see directions and map below
To Orchard Centre (a)
From the centre of Hartpury, take the turn (on left, from South or right from North) signed posted Highleadon and Tibberton (Also, marked with a "Brown" tourist sign to Hartpury Church and Bee Shelter).
Follow the road for 1 mile and take right turn (1st right) signed "Blackwells End". The Orchard Centre is the first building on the right, just under half-a-mile down the lane.
To Old Dominican Chapel (b)
From the centre of Hartpury, as above, take the turn (on left, from South or right from North) Signed posted Highleadon and Tibberton (Also, marked with a "Brown" tourist sign to Hartpury Church and Bee Shelter).
Then continue down this road for just under 2 miles, past two right turns. Hartpury Church is on the left, with a large distinctive stone-built barn also in front of you. Take the lane (Signed "Murrels End"). Just under 100 metres on the left, past the church, is the old chapel.
Parking is available in front of the chapel and church.
The Perry Pear Collection and the Wildlife Reserve
The Hartpury Perry Pear Orchards
The perry orchards, which form the Hartpury National Collection of Perry Pears, contain over 100 varieties of young traditional perry pear trees. It lies beside an ancient track thought to be of pre-roman origin, and once a main route between Gloucester and Hereford.
You can join a specialist in the field to learn orchard management, fruit identification, or how to make perry, cider, fruit juice and country wine... or just enjoy a wander through the pear, apple and plum trees on a self-guided orchard trail.
Sustaining the Environment
The Orchard Centre, together with the surrounding Hartpury Perry Park provides a model of best practice in local food and drink production, traditional orchard and wetland management, conservation, sustainable development and environmental protection. This is being developed through features such as photovoltaic tiles for energy supply, carbon-neutral production, water harvesting facilities and a reedbed-based greywater purification scheme.
The Wetlands & Haymeadow
The restoration of the ancient wetland meadows in the Perry Park adds to the existing ecological diversity - attracting wintering wildfowl, waders and breeding warblers. Local wetland wildlife includes water voles, amphibians, grass snakes and invertebrates - especially dragon flies and damselflies.
Managing the surrounding land as haymeadow increases the floral variety which thus provides a habitat for a diverse range of birds, insects and animals.
...So you can enjoy spending some time exploring and learning about wetland management, developing practical conservation skills, or following a wetland and haymeadow trail to see how many species of birds, insects and other wildlife you can identify.