DESPITE our rather topsy-turvy weather – wintery one day and spring-like the next – the Vale of Evesham blossom is starting to show and both visitors and local residents are invited to venture out and take a peek at the first blooms.

This is the 35th year of the Vale’s Blossom Trail and the AA signs are already up guiding motorists and cyclists along the 50-mile route through some of the outstanding villages in this enchanting part of the region.

The trail traditionally goes on from mid March to mid May, although this year things are running a little late due to recent cold weather, and there are a number of ways people can enjoy this natural beauty.

People can either view the various blossoms from their cars in their own time and at their own pace, or get a bit closer to nature by jumping in the saddle and pedalling their way around sections of the route. Alternatively there are organised coach tours with family-run operator Dudley’s Coaches providing the transport and guides on Thursday April 12 and 19.

Due to the limited number of tours and coach seats, booking is essential and can be made by contacting Dudley’s on 01386 792206. The tours are a feast for the eyes and offer an opportunity to learn about the history of fruit growing in the Vale and enjoy an entertaining day out.

A guide to this year’s blossom trail can be downloaded from

Wychavon Tourism Officer Angela Taylor said: “The blossom is coming out slowly. The weather has held things up considerably this year but the hawthorn and the blackthorn are out in the hedgerows. Both of these have white flowers.

“The cherry, which is pink, and the early plum trees are also beginning to blossom. The apple, which is pink, and the white blossom of later plums and pear can be seen in the coming weeks.”

Angela said although the blossom isn’t at its peak yet, cycling enthusiasts could take the opportunity this Easter weekend to get on their bikes and have a practice run in preparation for the Blossom Trail Bikeaway on Sunday April 15.

This year the Bikeaway includes a longer route of 58 miles for those serious pedal-pushers, as well as 11 and 27-mile routes. Angela said: “We have extended one of the routes this year because some people like to have a longer bike ride.”

Last year a record 218 cyclists took part including families and individuals from school children to elderly enthusiasts. The event raises funds for the Pershore Unit of St John Ambulance and the Vale of Evesham Community First Responders to enable them to continue their vital work in the area.

Anyone interested in taking part in the Blossom Bikeaway can download the registration form at The event starts and finishes at Hampton Ferry.

• The Vale of Evesham and, in particular the Pershore area, became synonymous with fruit trees after the yellow egg plum was discovered in Tiddesley Wood on the edge of Pershore in 1827

• In 1870 around 900 tonnes of plums was harvested and sent to market

• But by 1980 the traditional orchards in the area had diminished.

• In an attempt to preserve a little of the historic landscape, the Vale Landscape Heritage Trust was set up in 1999. Now it has around 280 acres of meadows and traditional orchards, protected for future generations.