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The English Apple Man


15th Jan 2021 - Growing for the environment, people and profit

In these troubled times, much is said about Covid-19 & Brexit, but the state of the Environment is the subject of much spoken and written word.


Making a success of business in this day and age is no longer just about making a profit


A story of success - Environment, People & Profit


It is now 25 years since I first met Angus Davison while visiting his Mother Cilla Clive at her farm at Ledbury.


Arriving with my colleague at Redbank, Cilla's fruit farm with views over historic Ledbury, essentially to discuss apple storage with Cilla, Angus was there to offer support to his mother.


From that visit I developed a lasting friendship with Cilla and her partner Tim Sobey.

I love the story of how Angus became one of the major producers of soft and stone fruit, from a modest beginning circa 40 years ago.


In his days at University, ruminating over the subject for his thesis, his mother Cilla suggested he grow some strawberries. This initial foray into soft fruit production set in motion what is today a global business.


The Haygrove website states: "Angus Davison, our founder and now 'Eccentric Chairman' begins growing strawberries as a degree thesis project on one hectare of rented land in Herefordshire, UK. Sleeping in the field".


This recently released video tells his amazing story and his passion for innovation, while respecting the environment and importantly delivering a necessary profit!


In the video we see Angus and Cilla at her home discussing the embryonic stages of his Haygrove business and the video introduces his daughter Ariana 19 and son Finley 16. Also his father Mark Davison and glimpse of his beautiful wife Beata!




A story of success - Environment, People & Profit


Click on Haygrove to view this very informative Video. HAYGROVE


Below: Cilla and Tim in one of the orchards at Redbank


As mentioned I have had the good fortune to know Cilla & Tim for 25 years and visited Redbank on many occasions. They are an amazing couple who have an undiminished thirst for new ventures and travel extensively (when free of Covid-19 restrictions)


In 2019 my wife and I spent a week in West Midlands on holiday and enjoyed lunch at Redbank with Cilla & Tim.


When in South Africa with my wife, circa 15 years ago, again enjoying lunch with Tim & Cilla at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens in Cape Town followed by an illuminating walk around the stunning Botanical gardens.


On another occasion when in RSA with the Under 40's during our visit to the 'stunning' Haygrove Heaven again over lunch and enjoying Cilla's 'glow of pride' in her son's achievements.




Reflecting back to the U40 visit to Haygrove Heaven - On Wednesday 1st March the U40's set off for Hermanus; the visit to Haygrove was particularly special for The English Apple Man, as 10 years previously a visit to the Hermanus site during a fruit society visit to The Western Cape found the Haygrove business there, still in the embryonic stage.


Then, raspberries were being grown in the soil and, before planting large rocks had to be cleared to make the soil 'plantable' - 10 years on and Haygrove Heaven is just that; 'Heaven' with an exponential change making the site now unrecognisable.....


Haygrove Heaven is just one of several sites in South Africa where Haygrove grow Raspberries, Blueberries and Blackberries in substrate filled pots. No soil production at all.....



The story of Angus Davison MBE (awarded in The Queen's Jubilee Year) and his creation of Haygrove is amazing. He exudes charisma, is innovative beyond imagination and clearly has the magic touch!


On a flight to Bolzano a couple of years ago, and in conversation with Angus I said - "did you mother deprive you of toys as a small boy?


Is that why you have acquired so many now to play with?


He broke into a stunning smile and laughed heartily!!!!!!


Until next week


Take care


The English Apple Man