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 Haytor.
The shed, blue and with a nice view across to Dartmoor, is where the business began and where I worked from 2006 to 2012. Since then we've been based at 41 Fore Street, Bovey Tracey, next door to the delicatessen run by my two partners.
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. James and a couple of others do most of the packing and look after the stock. Gill is involved year round, but has a special role in December, when she becomes the Christmas cheese box supremo.