Traditional orchard
Credit: Kent Downs AONB

Traditional orchard

2025 target

Maintain in favourable condition 39 ha; restore 8 ha and create 67 ha

Current resource (Kent Habitat Survey 2012)

1699 ha (source Natural England) UK BAP priority habitat

Rationale

Traditional orchards are scattered across Kent with many cherry orchards sited within the Faversham Fruit Belt. Through supporting and accurately assessing the extent, condition and composition of these traditional orchards, there are opportunities to take forward potential orchard conservation and restoration projects. There is a growing interest in community orchards with several in existence and new plantings appearing within new developments giving our target of 67 ha. Many existing orchards have been adopted by the local communities, passionate about retaining their heritage. Projects for the maintenance, restoration and creation of traditionally managed orchards will be supported where they form part of wider projects for the restoration of wildlife habitats at a landscape scale.