Our featured business this month is a seasonal one – it’s none other than Burrow Hill Cider, purveyors of fine cider, cider brandy – and the team behind the legendary Cider Bus, which will be at Glastonbury Festival this weekend – as will our Artistic Director Rebecca.
Here Becca shares a potted history of her time at Glastonbury, and her memories of the cider bus too.
“The Cider bus is an absolute institution at Glastonbury. Everyone – everyone – talks about the cider bus, meets at the cider bus. I remember turning up in the field when I got to my first Glastonbury. I was a naive wee young thing of 17, and there was this beautifully painted bus, selling the most fantastic cider. We made a pilgrimage from then on, every year, and I’m proud to say I’ve worked my way up into the Circus field now – as Bunny Morethan I’ve been compèring the Big Top for a decade which is mental, but every single year, we will make our way to the now huge cider bus area.
We’re taking a show to Glastonbury this year, it’s the first time we’ve been commissioned to produce something, and we’re so pleased. It’s a really lovely show about the power of pockets and radical clothing and we’ll be at the A Little More Sensation stage – I’ll end up taking all of my cast to the cider bus more than once I should think. They are a family-owned company, based in Somerset and they’re great mates with Michael Eavis.
The reason I know this is because, over the years I’ve spent so much, let’s say time, but let’s also say money, on the Burrow Hill cider, on all those wonderful ciders and brandies and things, that I got invited to a tour of their of their distilleries, and found out how they make their brandy and their cider. The wonderful chap who showed us around, who is a great grand man of the cider world, regaled us with many wonderful stories, and huge amounts of brandy – he just gave us absolutely tons at the end, so we were rolling around on his beautiful land.
I recognised him, and portraits of his beautiful daughters, because over the years, again ever since I was 17, they have been the people serving the cider at the big blue bus. They’ve now got lots of people helping them as it’s SO popular but over the years he and his gorgeous daughters have always been dressed up in glitter, serving people. At the end of our tour, and whilst we were in our cups going outside to a lovely posh cider barn, our tour guide did say to me “You must come and have a cup of tea next time you’re at Glastonbury, come on the back of the bus and have a cup of tea.” I suspect he says that all the girls but I might take him up on that, who knows, I would love to see inside that bus!
Anyway there you go that’s my history of the cider bus, me and Glastonbury all growing up together, and sometimes getting beautifully inebriated together!