I’m Ian Wellens, and The Cheese Shed is myself, James Mann and Gill Mann. We started in 2006, with the aim of making Westcountry cheese available to people all over the country. There’s such a wealth of great cheese made down here, but not all of it is widely available. After all, some of the best makers are very small-scale operations - concerned with quality more than quantity - meaning that their products are pretty hard to find.
From the start, we’ve been clear that our focus is on selling artisan cheese from our region. In Tuscany or Alsace you’ll find shops that sell cheese from the surrounding area, i.e from Tuscany and Alsace. We wanted the Cheese Shed to be the same. After all, there are plenty of other places where you can buy Stilton, or Emmenthal; we, on the other hand, will try and tempt you with Beenleigh Blue, Ogleshield or Heligan.
The shed, blue and with a nice view across to Dartmoor, is real - it’s where I work. The cheese, however, lives at Mann’s deli in the middle of Bovey Tracey. James‘ family have a run this shop since 1829, would you believe! Day to day, I’m the person you’ll talk to if you get in touch with The Cheese Shed.
I also look after the website, write the newsletters and so on. I am also often found on my bike, halfway between the shed and Manns! James does most of the packing and looks after the stock. Gill is involved all year round, but has a special role in December, when she becomes the Christmas cheese box supremo.