Vere French

French’s Transport of Stembridge – Haulier of Apples

Vere French

Dad had his own orchards which for many years were recognised as grade A by the main companies, such as Coates, Showerings, Taunton Cider, Perry Brothers and Rich’s of Highbridge.
Dad had orchards at Goodilong, Stembridge, Lake Farm and Giffords House – all in the Parish.

The vehicle above on the right is still around and has been refurbished. The one on the left, when new, was at that time the largest lorry in Somerset.

Collecting apple juice from a loaded lorry – the weight of the apples creates their pressing for drinking – before being shipped off.

Loading up in the orchards
Attached to each sack – destination – Coates of Nailsea

Like many in the Parish, Vere had several parts to his working life, and as well as the transport business and apple growing he also produced withies.

Dad was involved in all sorts of community activities and was a regular supporter of his local – The Rusty Axe just up the road.

Above : Vere French (centre), with Tommy Middleton on accordion
and below : carol singing – Vere French, first right – outside The Rusty Axe.

Vere French, first left, with parents, grandparents and brothers.

We used to pick apples from the age of about 7 years up until we were 16 or so. Dad being, in the transport business, always used to help out – besides the apples – with things like weddings and funerals – supplying the transport.”    
Sylvia Margetts nee French and Shirley Swain nee French –
Daughters of Vere French