Pressing ahead for new cider day to help Wells Community Hospital
07:00 16 October 2012
© Archant Norfolk 2012
A 150-year-old cider press is to be back in action for a new fund-raising day for Wells Community Hospital.
The Victorian cider press has been on display at Whin Hill Ciderworks in Stearman’s Yard, Wells for the past 14 years and was last used in the 1960s.
It will be brought back into use for the new public event called Cider Apple Day, to be held at Whin Hill Ciderworks on October 27, from 11am until 4pm.
Special limited edition cider will be made on the day.
Juice from apples grown in nearby Stanhoe will be fermented in an oak barrel to produce Champagne-style cider, which will be ready in spring 2013.
About 200 bottles of cider will be produced.. People can order their bottles for £5 on the day and all proceeds will go to Wells Community Hospital.
Organiser Peter Lynn said: “Making cider on these old presses is very hard work so we will be looking for some strong volunteers to help us out on the day.
“We believe this cider press was made in about 1860. It has always attracted a lot of interest in Wells so it will be great to have it working again and to show people how cider used to be made in the 19th century.
“Wells Community Hospital is a cause that a lot of people in the town care about. If we sell all of the cider we produce on the day we will raise about £1,000 for the hospital, which will be fantastic.”
Other activities on the day will include a display of apple varieties, an apple identification challenge and sales of apple-related products, including crab apple jelly.
Whin Hill Cider is a small company producing cider, perry and apple juice by traditional methods. The business was started in 1994 by Mr Lynn and Jim Fergusson. Ownership changed in April this year to Mark and Lisa Jarvis.
Mr Jarvis said: “If this goes well there is no reason why we couldn’t do more things like this in the future for local good causes.”
Wells Community Hospital is undergoing a major long-term renovation.
It is hoped the hospital will eventually have at least 24 beds and housing-with-care schemes as part of a new-building project.