Dick Willows – Traditional Cider Maker, Boutiques, Galleries, Farm Shop & Cafe
For those of you not already acquainted with the wonderfully unique world of Dick Willows, where have you been? Conveniently and beautifully situated on the Box Road, in Bathford, Dick Willows provides locals with all the fresh produce and wood they can possibly want. But that’s not all. As you negotiate the bumpy driveway, with its pile of newly chopped wood and van loaded for delivery to your right, you are aware at just how large a plot this is, but possibly unaware at what lies ahead!
When Dick took over, just four years ago, he clearly had a vision of more than just cider making. He is gathering up the community and showing them just what our glorious area has to offer. The shop stocks locally sourced food, wine, ale and, of course, the exclusive Dick Willows Cider, as well as ecologically sound produce, from detergents to glassware.
The apple barn is still huge though, but with some extremely clever use of space, Dick has managed to squeeze in nine, yes nine small boutiques! Well, eight small boutiques and one ‘Walk of Curiosity’. They’re as eclectic as the man himself, and you’d be hard pushed to ﬁnd such a wonderful collection of shops on most high streets these days. Whether you need a gift for the model train enthusiast in your life or a handmade corset for those special occasions, ﬂowers for the mother in law or bicycle parts for the more adventurous, they’re all here and more. The more in this case, being the wonderful mix of antiques and curios on the ‘Walk of Curiosity’ upstairs.
While you’re browsing the boutiques and curios, the tempting smells waft around from The Pepperpot, the adjoining cafe. Do pop in. It’s a great place to relax with friends or with a borrowed book, in front of a roaring log burner. The coffee is excellent and the breakfasts are huge. For a different atmosphere, why not make a Friday evening reservation with a loved one.
So, as you head out of Bath on the A4, do not pass Dick Willows by but pull in and stop a while. Personally I’ve been crying out for a place where I can replenish the log pile, sample a few ciders and get ﬁtted out for a corset all under one roof. It’s my own private heaven.
Check out the website, http://www.dickwillows.com/ for information on Dick’s Cider Tours and upcoming workshops and events.
You can also ﬁnd up to date information on events such as Apple Day and the Wassail (The Waking of the Trees). A nod to our pagan ancestry and a jolly ﬁne excuse for mulled cider and drum banging