Belfast Telegraph

Whitehouse pupils blossom in sunshine of HazelbankThe pupils from Whitehouse Primary School at Hazelbank Park

As part of the ongoing restoration of the orchard at Hazelbank Park, children from a Newtownabbey primary school took part in an event to celebrate the blossom.

The primary five pupils from Whitehouse Primary School took time to meet and learn about the apple trees still remaining in the orchard.

This was followed by a lively tasting session when a variety of apples were compared — sweet, sour and somewhere in between.

After the tasting session, the pupils got to work to create colourful bunting.

These were then used to decorate the apples trees in the park.

The colourful bunting alongside the natural blossom really highlights this corner of the park.

This event, which was very successful and enjoyed by both children and teachers, was led by Spouncer Ecology.

A spokeswoman from Whitehouse Primary School said: “The children really enjoyed the day out.

“They had a lot of fun tasting the different kinds of apples and making the bunting as well.

“We will be having a feedback session soon to discuss the different aspects of the trips, where they will be talking and writing about the experience they had.

“They had a really good experience and some of them would walk through the park regularly but had never seen the orchard |before.

“They are already looking forward to going back next year,” she added.

Hazelbank Park is set to be restored to its former glory as an |orchard as part of a project currently being run by Newtownabbey Borough Council, incorporating community involvement, local schools and art.

The remnants of the orchard still remain, with old apple trees still providing fruit for both people and wildlife.

The council’s parks department has already started the first phase of the project, with the removal of vegetation around the orchard area.

The restoration of the orchard in Hazelbank is a long-running project — so keep a look out for up and coming events.

If you would like any further information, please contact Lindsay Matthews, Biodiversity officer for Newtownabbey Borough Council on Tel: 90340069.

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