If you have never been to the Vale of Evesham, now would be the perfect time to go. The “Garden of England” has been justly famous for its fruit production for many centuries. Lots of native trees including apple, pear, plum, damson and cherry all grow very happily here.
You’ll have to wait until late summer to sample the fresh produce, but right now is the time to see the region at its most beautiful.
Naturally, where there are fruit trees, at this time of year there is blossom. And, in the Vale of Evesham, there is lots of it! Indeed, it is the blossom of this very region that was supposedly the inspiration for Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream.
The particular tradition of the Blossom Trail, as such, began 30 years ago. Geoff Perks worked on the fruit farms all his life. He died in 1983, at the age of 84, just after seeing the blossoms arrive one last time, and his final wish was to have his coffin drawn eight miles along the trail. Ever since then it has become a yearly local ritual to walk the Blossom Trail in his memory.
Today, the trail extends to almost 50 miles, which is quite a long way to walk, even on a nice day. Many people cycle or drive the route, but there are now official Blossom Coach Tours – and, on this 30th anniversary year, even a Blossom Trail Bikeaway. These tours take in all the farm shops, pubs and nurseries that celebrate the Blossom Trail with such delights as apple scones, blossom marmalade, blossom cake and Pershore plum jam.
For more details visit www.blossom-trail.org.uk