The Goodwin family have been farming at Ashmans Farm since the early 1900s. The farm comprises some 165 acres (66 ha.) which lie in the "Blackwater Valley" between Colchester and Chelmsford, Essex. It has several soil types, ranging from fine sandy loam to alluvial silty clay loam against the river.
Four generations of the family have seen many changes since coming to the farm. In the early days cropping consisted of flower and vegetable seed production, with cattle on the low-lying river fields. Peas, runner beans and potatoes were also cultivated on the lighter land, for the London wholesale markets.
Cricket Bat willows have been grown on the farm for many years. The Blackwater valley is renowned nationally for the number and quality of its Cricket Bat willows.
Small plots of basketry willow were established in the late 1970's to supply local hobby interests.
During 1987 Robert Goodwin set up plots of the new fast growing willows, which were on trail at Long Ashton Research Station for renewable energy production.
It soon became obvious that not only were these fast growing willows suitable for renewable energy production but also that they were highly suitable for amenity work such as garden structures.
We now grow a wide range of willow varieties for foliage, basketry, fencing, sea defences etc.
Ashmans Farm is situated in the Blackwater valley between Braxted & Kelvedon in the heart of the Essex Countryside and is easily accessible from the A12.
Ashmans Farm, Kelvedon, Colchester, Essex CO5 9BT