Trust Links held a successful Southend Apple Day event on Saturday at St Laurence Orchard. The community event attracted 300 people and made more than £500 for the charity, to continue its work with some of the most vulnerable people in Southend.
Supporters turned out in force to support the Apple Day event, which is now in its eighth year. The event have the opportunity for local people to visit the one acre orchard, which will be celebrating its centenary in 2020 having been planted by soldiers from the Shoeburyness Barracks on their return from World War 1.
The Apple Day featured live music from members of the Growing Together community garden project, BBQ, raffle, apple juicing and apple picking. The day was supported by local environmental groups with Southend in Transition, South East Essex Conservation Volunteers and South East Essex Organic Gardeners also having stalls. Leigh Lions hosted a popular pig racing game, helping to raise money for Trust Links.
Matt King, CEO of Trust Links, said "Thank you so much to our members, volunteers, staff and partners for helping to run the day. Apple Day is an important part of our events calendar, celebrating the seasons and the connection between people and nature to improve mental health and wellbeing. It also helped raise vital funds for our charity, which works with 1,000 people locally to improve mental health and wellbeing through gardening, peer support, courses and positive activities.”
Trust Links is a mental health and wellbeing charity, which runs four Growing Together therapeutic community gardens in Westcliff, Shoeburyness, Thundersley and Rochford as well as a carers project and the REACH Recovery College. Trust Links has been looking after St Laurence Orchard on behalf of Southend Council for 13 years and holds regular work parties to maintain the orchard.