The Rectory Orchard was purchased from the Diocesan Board in May 2002 – after a rather anxious time of sealed bids and many other interested parties trying to outbid each other. Luckily the Parish Council pitched the winning bid and with the help of a 25 year Public Works Loan the Orchard was purchased for the village.
The work then started on the Orchard – volunteers pruned the old trees, cleared scrub and planted new fruit trees (all sponsored by individuals – see Orchard map). New gates were installed.
Plant sales and various fund raising events and the support from the Parish Council funded these improvements.
Bird boxes were placed in the trees and a mowing schedule was implemented. Benches were gradually installed and drainage improvements were made.
A Hedge laying workshop was held and a length of the hedge around the copse boundary was laid. Native Hedging and small trees were planted along the field boundary. Wheatley Cub Scouts planted some small trees in the right hand corner (road side).
Various events are held in the Orchard – Holton summer party/pig roast, Kwik cricket and other informal uses. The Orchard is there for the casual use and enjoyment of the open space by local residents and for other events/uses by agreement with the Orchard Committee (a sub-committee of Holton Parish Council)
I think that you will agree that the area is a special place and is now protected and preserved for the benefit of future local residents.