The Old Tea Boy from Fyers, the original Sussex Tea Company.
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Why me?

I was brewed in 1947 on a Uva tea estate in Ceylon as the youngest of three children of a four generation tea family.  My great-great-uncle Keith Rollo pioneered tea planting in Ceylon, so the whole family was steeped in it.

As a child, I had little choice but to spend my time in and around the tea gardens, where the year revolved around the whole cycle of planting, plucking and processing.  Luckily, I loved it.  Then I came back to school in Sussex and by the time I emerged, tea planting was not an easy option.

At the end of a decent education and to the dismay of my teachers and family, I decided to be a tea taster/blender and buyer.  Tea planters always viewed that section of the trade with some suspicion!

Nonetheless, I joined Brooke Bond as one of its youngest ever trainees.

In those days all good tea companies gave their taster/buyers a true apprenticeship.  I’m very grateful for the grounding they gave and can even look back with nostalgia at the appallingly interesting digs I lived in while working in the tea-tasting room, warehouse, factory, office, etc., then as a salesman in the well-known little red Brooke Bond van before …

grasping the opportunity to go abroad by joining Liptons in 1969.  I worked in Kenya, India, South America and Europe, eventually managing the buying and blending for more countries than I can count.  The family history held me in good stead – once producers knew I was a ‘planter’s boy’, their attitude changed in my favour!

So my pedigree may be OK but how good is the tea?  Try it – the Tea Shop is here and a pack costs just about the same as a respectable pint of beer but lasts a great deal longer.

Douglas Fyers

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