CHILDREN in Abingdon will soon be learning how to forage for fruit and create their own bug hotel.

It is all thanks to a huge community effort to build a “forest school” garden in Caldecott Primary School field.

The Abingdon Carbon Cutters (ACC) and the Abingdon Green Gym began the project in January, and on Saturday after it was delayed by snow and flooding, the final planting was finished.

ACC project manager and retired teacher Marion Owen, 56, said: “The idea is to improve the environment and teach children to forage and pick edible berries and use fruit from the orchard in cooking.”

The outdoor learning environment will be used by the primary school and the South Abingdon Children’s Centre next door.

Caldecott teacher Alison Shenton said: “The forest school ethos encourages opportunities for learning outdoors.

“It is usually in a woodland environment for initiating learning, physical development, counteracting obesity, caring for the natural environment and building confidence and self-esteem.

“It is thought that some behavioural problems occur as a result of children spending less time outdoors.”

An orchard will be planted with apple, pear, plum and cherry trees.

The fruit can then be used in cookery sessions such as the ones ACC runs at the children’s centre.