The first ever Apple Pie Fair took place in Avonwick on Sunday 21st September, on land designated for a new community hall project, attracting more than 300 people from the local parish and surrounding areas.
Events took place to suit all ages from apple bobbing and pressing to apple and spoon races, alongside the flagship apple pie bake off competition. The best in show went to novice bakers Dan and Sam, who had reportedly never before prepared pastry let alone baked a whole pie.
Additional prize winning producers included Diana Tyler for her sweet preserve Seville Marmalade and Lorna Sedman for her savoury runner bean pickle. A challenge to guess the weight of the giant apple pie, baked by The Turtley Cornmill, was most accurately judged by Richard Blackwell. Many of the winners donated their prize winnings to the project.
A big ideas apple for a new community hall cut to the core of what the event was all about. Suggestions ranged from a venue to hold food and music festivals, to pilates classes and kids' clubs. The next stage of the consultation process in the Community Hall Project is a residents' survey, which will be circulated soon.
As the day drew to a close, a ceremonious apple tree courtesy of Adam's Apples was planted by Chairman Paul Tyler and South Hams District Councillor Robert Vint who donated funds from his Locality Budget to help pay for the event. Rounding off the occasion, a special performance took place from a local wassail choir, including members from the Wild Harmony group, singing apple-themed songs.
Paul Tyler, Chairman of the Avonwick North Huish Community Hall Project said: "Many people attending the event said how wonderful it was that the community had all come together in support of the very first Apple Pie Fair. The first of many we hope!
"It was a real success, since the intention was to provide a fun, community-building event that would help raise awareness of the Avonwick and North Huish Community Hall Project.
"The suggestions left on our "Big Ideas Apple" prove that the community is in support of this project.Â
Various refreshments were provided courtesy of local businesses The Avon Inn and the Avonwick Shop, along with local meat produce for the barbeque from ?
Meanwhile, volunteers and voluntary contributions added to the bring and buy cake stall, a tombola and raffle. South Hams District Councillor and local resident and farmer Richard Steer provided the car parking facilities.
The event was sponsored by Luscombe Maye Estate Agents who provided enough balloons to fill the roof of the marquee. The Community Council of Devon were in attendance, who are providing the committee with mentoring and support to help get the project off the ground.