janefs - we were there, what do you look like?, maybe we saw you
an update from last night, is that mostly things should go as planned like last year.
Ivanhoe - will ring Richard in Cheam to arrange hire of presses.
Ivanhoe - will talk to Tharg about seeing if we can source our apples from the same place as last year, and there are it appears several more people who want to volunteer to get out of london for a day or two to help picking/bagging.
Blake/Biro/Ollie has offered the use of him and/or his dad with camper van (or hired van) for helping with getting apples from orchard to surrey Farm
Emma Farm Woman - has said that both provisional weekends (Nov 5th/6th or 12th/13th) are ok for her and the farm (though the pressing date is dependent on the apple ripeness)
Various people have offered help with vehicles, carrying, ferrying, fetching etc, stuff from and too places.
We do need to come up with a 'wet weather' option - this will most likely be some tarpaulins strung up above the gazebo/pergola thing at the farm, but may involve being inside some of the farm buildings (which we need to ask Emma about viability/feasability)
We discussed food for the two days, and although we have some ideas, we would like some extra people to volunteer to help out with this.
We also discussed how to anchor the presses to the ground (last year they moved around a lot when nearing full pressedness), and Blake already has some ideas. we need to ask Richard how he copes, and maybe get some large bits of wood (a half inch or thicker, about four foot square) which we can bolt the presses to.
Alcohol was discussed (obviously, given the nature of the event!) and we feel that drinking of some form should be available later on on each day. Too much early on will affect the safety of the project (you don't want blood and fingers in your apple pulp!), but a small amount later on can help raise spirits, and morale (if it's raining).
Last year, one of the major costs, for most people was buying the brewing equipment - and those who did so last year won't need to again this year. As it is likely to be most of the same people then buying of equipment as a group will not necessarily happen this year. Therefore anyone new to this (who hasn't already got the required objects), should sort out this for themselves (I'm sure Ivanhoe will supply details of where these can be purchased! - or a search on the internet will bring up online sites for buying what you need.... and I'm sure someone will also post here a list of the necessary things (but you can look at last years cider threads as well for a good idea).
I think I've covered everything, but I'm sure it'll be pointed out if I haven't
Sorry I didn't make it last night, poor cat has been shaved & stitched (she looks like an E.T. pyjama case - big head, zip up the middle!) so I couldn't leave her.
Either suggested weekend is fine for me.
Am happy to volunteer for day before sterilizing/ cleaning of equipment etc.
Will also happily provide hot soup & sandwiches, also a cake for afternoon tea. Do we want to sort out some tea/coffee making facilities?
We need to get some sterilizing powder, camden tablets, brewers yeast etc probably some extra syphon tubing too as there seemed to be rather a shortage last year. Can we get these items from Richard in Cheam? If so, do we want to pre- order this stuff & have a whip round so that we can pick it up at the same time as the presses.
Think that getting some tarp is a good idea - anyone have any already?
Have saved 2 bottles of "Plums" to celebrate completion of this years pressing, will bring on Sunday!
Not long now - very exciting!
The major decision that we still need to make is which weekend will we do it on?
5th/6th Nov or 12th/13th Nov?
If we do it on the 5th/6th, I am off work the week before, and can either be one of the apple-fetching posse or can fetch the presses. Both of these jobs need to be done before the weekend and so whoever does them will have to take time off work. I won't be able to take the presses back on the 7th, as I'll be starting my new job, but I can devote pretty much the whole week before to cider making and I'm happy to do that.
If we do it on the 12th/13th, it will be the end of my first week at work and so all I can offer is to be at the pressing all day on both days. I will not be able to take off any time in the week before or after.
Ollie is pretty much the only other person so far who's said they're available to take time off in the week before or after pressing, and he did all the driving to get the apples last year so I feel that even if he goes again this year (which would still be asking a lot more from him than any of the rest of us) then he needs help with all the carrying.
If we press on the 5th/6th, then I can provide that help for Ollie, and all the then need is for someone else to pick up the presses from Cheam (which will take two trips in a car - or one trip in two cars - and can be done the Friday before pressing).
If we press on the 12th/13th, then so far we've only got Ollie who can take any time off. This isn't enough.
For many people, it doesn't matter which weekend we press on, but I do know that there are some of you who can't do the 5th/6th.
I want as many of us to take part as possible, but if we're going to do it on the 12th/13th, then somone else (or, even better, several someone elses) has to step up and volunteer to give up some of their time to drive the van/help the driver/pick up the presses.
I'm happy to take two days off (thursday + Friday) for the second weekend, but am already away for the 3rd/4th.
I don't have a preference for the actual weekend of pressing, but as I said earlier it depends on the apples, they may be ready on Oct 29th/30 or not ready until Nov 19th/20th - we need some advice from someone who knows more about this kind of thing, to say with some kind of knowledge 'yes they will be ready on(or about) x weekend' that should be the deciding factor as to when we press.
either weekend, Ivanhoe, or I will not be able to give our full attention to all the extra Thursday/Friday work that needs to be done, so we do still need some help in that area.
I think it's more sensible to work on the assumption that apples WILL be ready on either of those weekends. One week either way (which is all we are talking about) will make no difference anyway.
And we can't just wait for the apples, because we have to book the presses and tell the farm and people have to keep that time free and all the rest of it.
Last yr we had several types of apples. They all ripen at different times (with early apples ripening from around Sept) and last yr, by waiting until late, we were able to get a variety. However, some of the ones we had last yr were a bit "overripe", and that's the downside of waiting.
The downside of not waiting is that we may get less of a selection of apples (but, conversely, there should be less rotten ones as they'll not have been hanging around for so long).
If you need cover we might be able to help - we used to have a large stand (for selling merchandise at events) and we haven't used it for ages so we could always come and set it up to provide cover for presses/pressers ... I will have to check with the husband but I'm sure it would be ok
Also, on the day(s) am happy to butter barmcakes and supply cake and soup and tea ...
so we need more people to express a preference for which weekend they want, to decide which weekend we'll press, or we need Tharg to say 'hey guys, I can get apples, for the first weekend'
(or he might say 'second weekend')
then we'll know
or he might say ' I can't get apples this year'
in which case we'll need to source them elsewhere