A charity that helped restore a historic orchard belonging to a musical legend is appealing for public votes in a national awards scheme.

The Orchard Project has reached the finals of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards - to find the UK's favourite National Lottery-funded project.

The project helped breathe new life into 30 'lost' orchards around London, including Lady Gilbert's Orchard, which was planted by Lady Lucy Gilbert, the wife of light opera librettist Sir William S. Gilbert of Gilbert and Sullivan fame, in the grounds of their Harrow home Grim's Dyke House.

The restoration was part of a three-year campaign called A Celebration of Orchards, which also set up an apple juice and cider press for the capital's remaining fruit trees, and set up a scheme training people to manage community orchards.

The Orchard Project is competing in the Best Heritage Project category, and beat more than 700 organisations to reach the public voting stage.

The project with the most votes will receive a £10,000 cash prize and a National Lottery Awards trophy at a ceremony to be broadcast on BBC One in November.

Abby Cremin from The Orchard Project said: “We are delighted to learn that we have been shortlisted as a finalist in the Heritage Category in the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards.

“Three years ago, we started an ambitious plan to restore 30 of London’s oldest orchards and it wouldn’t have been possible without National Lottery funding.

“The funding not only helped to bring these beautiful spaces back to life but engaged thousands of members of the community through training, community events and school workshops.”

Jonathan Tuchner, from the National Lottery, added: “The Orchard Project is doing an incredible job in its local community and the work they do is hugely impressive.

“They thoroughly deserve to be in the finals of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards and with your support they could be a winner.”

To vote for The Orchard Project, go to lotterygoodcauses.org.uk/awards. Or use the Twitter hashtag #NLAOrchards. Voting runs until midnight on August 21.