Our Bluebell Story
The Brown Family have been milking their herd of Holstein Friesian cows at Brunswood Farm, Locko Park, Derby since 1953.
In 2007 and as a result of falling milk prices, the family looked at ways that the farm could be preserved for future generations, ensuring also that the cows could continue to produce their wonderfully creamy milk. The question was what should the Brown’s do???
The answer came in a light bulb moment one tea time around the farmhouse kitchen table when the family were tasting one of the many poor quality mass produced ice creams available at the time. As they loved ice cream so much, why shouldn’t the family make and sell their own? Italian gelato at the time was by far the best ice cream available on the market, but what a good idea to make a creamy luxury artisan ice cream, made in the same way as the Italians, but with a British twist. Rosemary Brown had often made her own ice cream from the milk from the cows on the farm (milked by Husband Geoff and Son Oliver) so this was a perfectly natural step up!!
The new enterprise was started in December 2008 after an RDPE grant had helped to convert half the redundant buildings in the farmyard into a tiny production area (situated in the shed where Grandpa Brown had once hand milked his very first Bluebell the cow)
The creamy milk was carried from the dairy, across the yard to the production area in covered buckets. The food miles were all of 20 metres!
From the outset, we spent a lot of time developing our flavours and using only the finest ingredients. We carefully tried out over 20 different vanillas and over 30 different chocolates until we found our ultimate goal. Our aim was to use local or British produce wherever possible for our very special, very British Ice Cream!
That was our starting point, the rest of our story is full of Royal visits, Great Taste Awards, International Awards when we beat the Italians at Ice Cream making in their own land, a tale of Prime Ministers and Chancellors, National awards and of course, plenty of great taste and fun!!!
We are so passionate about Bluebells Ice Cream!!!
Nowadays, we have 26 flavours of Ice Creams and Sorbet to try in our beautiful Ice Cream Tea Rooms, or available to purchase from one of our handpicked stockists around the region.
On the farm, visitors can also enjoy meeting our animals in our Animal Patch, before letting the Children loose to play in our Play Area – so near to Derby, but so very much in the Country!
Our passion for food and farming goes much further – as custodians of our farm, we take our environmental responsibility very seriously and have joined Natural England’s Higher Level Stewardship Scheme with the aim of managing habitats to deliver significant environmental benefits and increasing biodiversity. Our Farm is also red Tractor Assured and we farm to high levels of animal welfare, environmental protection, traceability and food production.
We welcome Schools onsite – a great place for learning outside the Classroom, whilst having a fun day out!