Bob Chaplin has won a national award for his tireless commitment to the cider industry, which spans 40 years.
The National Association of Cider Makers (NACM) awarded the annual Fred Beech trophy to Bob, a Fruit and Orcharding Manager in Somerset, for his support of the South West of England Cider Association (SWECA) and his dedication and efforts at the Orchard & Cider section of the annual Royal Bath & West Show.
Working out of the Shepton Mallet Cider Mill for Magners GB, Bob joins a team of volunteers who annually put together an exceptional celebration of orchards and cider at the Royal Bath & West Show, the largest agricultural show in the UK.
The Orchard and Cider section of the Show has become a real showpiece for the cider making industry and it also boasts the largest cider competition in the world.
Bob’s cool manner under pressure is legendary and his tenacity and good humour is a true strength and contributes greatly to the delivery of an event that has grown almost beyond recognition from its modest beginnings.
Presenting the award, Paul Bartlett, Chair of the NACM, said: “The award is well-deserved. We are grateful for all that Bob does, and continues to do, for the cider industry. Long may it continue.”
Bob began working in the cider industry 40 years ago, taking up the role of Laboratory Technician for just £850 per annum. He has a long track record of establishing and fostering the link between growers and producers as part of his SWECA work and is a much-valued source of advice for newcomers and existing cider makers alike.
Receiving his award from the new chair of the NACM, Paul Bartlett, Bob said: “I am honoured and delighted to be this year’s Fred Beech Trophy award winner. It’s fantastic to be awarded for the work that you do and even more rewarding to have a career that you enjoy. This award will take pride of place in my office.”
The Fred Beech Trophy is given to those who have made an outstanding contribution to the cider industry each year. The award was created in memory of Fred Beech, who was a leading pomologist at the former Long Ashton Research Centre in Bristol.
The award was presented at the NACM executive meeting in London, prior to the All Party Parliamentary Cider Reception at the House of Commons, Westminster.If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!