People in Shipley are being brought together through a new fruit tree orchard. 

The hilly area of grassland, near Wycliffe Road and Moorhead View, has been revitalised from a forgotten space into a shared one.

It has been funded by Trees for Cities through a National Lottery grant and kindly supported by Fruitworks for pruning skills. 

The charity helps revitalise forgotten spaces, creating healthier environments, and getting people excited about growing, foraging, and eating healthy food.

The idea for an orchard blossomed thanks to a group of residents from the Wycliffe Neighbourhood Association.

After asking for residents’ ideas at the Kirkgate Centre in Shipley, the community group reached out to children from Wycliffe CofE Primary School.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Pupils from Wycliffe CofE Primary School get involved in tree plantingPupils from Wycliffe CofE Primary School get involved in tree planting (Image: Incommunities)

Councillor Rhona North, chair of Shipley Town Council’s Allotments and Green Spaces Committee, and a member of the Wycliffe Neighbourhood Association, said: “I’m passionate about gardening, biodiversity and the community where I live. 

“We put our passions together.

“I have been blown away with how the local community has got behind the orchard, and I'm really looking forward to watching the trees grow and the area develop over the years. Hopefully we have put something on this land that will stand the test of time and will be here for years to come.”

The land where the orchard has been planted belongs to housing provider Incommunities, who helped bring ideas into reality. 

Andrew Peacock, grounds maintenance team leader at Incommunities, said: “I worked with Rhona and the team on the consultations and went into the school to hear first-hand the children's ideas for the area of land.

"They had some great suggestions for the types of fruit trees they wanted to see planted. It’s been great to then see the same children come down and get involved in the planting of the orchard.”

Two planting sessions have been held so far with 20 fruit trees now firmly planted in the ground.

Two children from Wycliffe CofE Primary School spoke about how it felt to take part in the planting.

Lucas said: “I was really happy because the residents that live there liked my star planting idea. I was even happier when this got chosen and we planted the trees in a star shape. I also wanted to say thank you for giving us this opportunity, we loved it!”

Nyla said: “I was really excited when we did the planting, and I cannot wait to see how the trees look once they have grown.”