Hi, We're the Courtneys. Thank you for visiting our 'Courtneys of Whimple' website.
As a small Family run business, we are passionate about Apples and everything 'Apple' related. We strive to create the very best products using Apples grown from our own Traditional West Country Cider Orchard where we live and work. Everything is natural, we don't spray our trees or use fertilisers, letting biodiversity do the job for us! Our Apples are grown, picked, pressed and bottles all in the same location. You can’t get fresher than that.
We all play our part in the business & go out and about to sell our wares at Farmers Markets & Food Fares as well as selling via shops, pubs, restaurants, cafes & tea shops etc.
In the past we used to pick all the apples in the orchard, they were transported to Somerset together with other Whimple apples to be made into Cider. Unfortunately, the contract was cancelled, as imported, concentrated, juice became more popular.
For about 5 years after that, we just let most of our apples rot on the ground, which really was a crime!
We then started to supply a reputable Cider maker in South Devon, precariously driving up Haldon Hill with a trailer full of wobbly apple sacks. We had a puncture one day and had to leave the trailer in a layby & just got back to it in time to see someone hitching it up to their vehicle, ready to pinch it!
Those were the days, before investing in our own pressing equipment & embarking on our own business, which means, now we can help other people who need their apples pressed and we will never let our own beautiful apples rot on the ground again.
We were optimistic when we set out but could never have forecast the popularity of our Ciders and the long list of prestigious Prizes we have won. Hard work, but very rewarding.
The Old Cider Orchard was planted by Whiteways around 100 years ago. They used an interesting & wide variety of apples chosen to make a fine blend of cider.
As the older original trees fall in the orchard, we re-plant with old Devon varieties. At present there are about 430 trees. The old apple wood is cut up for the wood burner to keep us warm in winter. The pulp left after pressing is piled up in a huge heap,it smells great & when bagged up makes a delicious treat for our sheep & the local farmers cattle.
The orchard is a haven for wild life, all foraging & feasting on seasonal goodies. Woodpeckers live in the holes in the old trees and the bees from the bee hives help pollinate the trees to ensure a good crop. We don't spray the trees or use chemicals.
Our sheep roam, eat the grass & have their lambs in the orchard in the Spring. In Autumn the hedgerows are bursting with wild fruit & berries.
The children will have wonderful lifetime memories of playing, looking after the lambs, and blackberrying, collecting big bowls full of luscious fruit for Ma to use.
Tucked away in rural Devon, the orchard is far away from pollution & car exhaust fumes. Nature has provided us with such an abundance of resources, which perhaps we hadn't appreciated before. The orchard has been revitalized.