Waitrose prepares the ground for its community apple orchard
Marlborough’s Apple Day project to create a community orchard took another step forward this week when Waitrose manager Andy Davies (pictured) braved icy winds to dig the store’s car park site in preparation for the arrival of 11 trees.
Helped by members of his own staff and those from the project team, they turned over a strip of ground on the edge of the car park where last October an initial fruit-laden tree was planted to launch the scheme.
Another 11 apple trees, all rare breed local specimens, are to be planted on February 21 when Mr Davies will be joined by supermarket managers from 19 stores in four counties to prove Waitrose’s commitment to the environment.
On Monday the volunteers included Alan Birch, normally seen as a partner serving on the meat and fish counters, who has been seconded to the apple project on an eight hours a month basis to ensure the new trees are properly pruned and cared for.
he hard work of those using spades – and Mr Birch (pictured) operating a digger machine – was filmed by a crew working on a video to be shown at the annual meeting of Waitrose’s senior managers due to be held at Celtic Manor, Cardiff, later in the year.
“So our directors will be able to see what we have been up to on a horrible cold day in February,” the normally smart-suited Mr Davies told Marlborough News Online as he heaved his shovel full of earth.
The Marlborough store is also taking part in a Waitrose campaign to reduce pollution and transport costs by encouraging partners to share cars to and from work every day.
“It’s been going on now for a year,” said Mr Davies. “About 30 members of staff are involved in what has become an on-going commitment. Every Waitrose store is doing the same.”