Our People


ADRIAN PIKE
Managing Director & Winemaker


Adrian Pike, Managing Director & Winemaker

What got you into wine?
Driving through France to Midem (music industry conference) in Cannes every year and visiting vineyards on the way - we would drive through Champagne, Burgundy and the Rhône which was incredibly inspiring. I was lucky enough to have a friend who was a vintner in Cannes, so we would load up our rickety Citroen 2CV with wine (breaking down regularly en route). I first realised the potential of English wine when I tried one of Will Davenport’s wines in a restaurant in Soho back in 2014. I called Will the next day and began studying wine production and viticulture whilst working with him at Davenport.

What did you do before?
I ran a music company in London. Previously, I founded record label Moshi Moshi.

What do you love most about your job?
The transformation from pruning the vines right back down to two canes to watching them grow through the season - all the way through to watching the berries develop and tasting the flavours. I love the process in the winery, too - turning juice to wine - and then capturing it in the bottle at the perfect time. Once you start tasting the fruit, plans begin to percolate, but you never really know what you’re going to get and that’s rather magical. The taste of the juice transforms dramatically through fermentation but also develops during ageing - whether that be in oak, terracotta, steel or concrete. We tend to do very little to our wines after fermentation but what we do do is taste, and judging the perfect timing for bottling is an art that I’m loving learning.

What is your favourite time of year in the vineyard?
Harvest. It’s the toughest time but also the time that the ideas start sparking as you taste the fruit.

Favourite Westwell wine?
Pelegrim. It’s the most Westwell-ian of the wines we make - it reflects what the site is capable of: rich and full wine with a fruit-forward profile.


MARCUS GOODWIN
Vineyard Manager


Marcus Goodwin, Vineyard Manager

What got you into wine?
A crazy Welsh rugby / biology teacher at school. He took a free study course in the sixth form on Wine Studies. Not really a posh school, just a forward thinking teacher.

What did you do before?
I worked at Oddbins Wine Merchants in central London. I also worked as a garden designer / landscaper and in plant nurseries - always growing stuff!

What do you love most about your job?
The fact I don't have to shave every day and the dress code is casual casual. What brought you to Westwell? When Adrian was putting the deal together to purchase Westwell in 2017, he asked me to come and have a look at the site. I took one look and just said buy it.

What is your favourite time of year in the vineyard?
April/May when the new shoots are about 2 - 3 inches long and the new leaves have a pinkish tinge to them.

Favourite Westwell wine?
Westwell Ortega is my go-to house dry white.


ADAM LOWE
Assistant Vineyard Manager


Adam Lowe, Assistant Vineyard Manager

What got you into wine?
I got into wine during family camping holidays around French wine regions before realising what great terroir we had under our feet here in my home county of Kent.

What did you do before?
I previously worked in the travel industry before 'following my dream' to work in English wine. I’ve also spent much time travelling around the world and have visited vineyards on every continent that vines are cultivated.

What do you love most about your job?
I love the diversity of the job and being outdoors - noticing the wildlife and the changing of the seasons.

What is your favourite time of year in the vineyard?
I really like winter in the vineyard. After predominantly working in an office, I appreciate the stillness and silence that the dormant season affords.

Favourite Westwell wine?
I am a big seafood lover so my favourite wine is Westwell Ortega which is a perfect match.


GALIA PIKE
Illustrator & Dogsbody


Galia Pike, Illustrator & Dogsbody

What got you into wine?
Adrian! When we were living in London, both working in music, I genuinely hadn’t anticipated this as our future. Once I tried some English wine, though, I was amazed by the quality and it wasn’t long before we took the plunge, relocating to Sussex where I started studying at Plumpton College and began a blog on English wine. My main job at Westwell is illustrating and designing our labels - mostly very detailed illustrations of vines and the vineyard.

What did you do before?
Amongst other things, I worked as a composer for film and television.

What do you love most about your job?
The variety. From drawing and designing labels to spending time in the vineyard - the most beautiful place I know.

What is your favourite time of year in the vineyard?
I tend to work mainly from home, but as a family, we are always about during harvest and I love the frantic excitement of getting the fruit in and thinking of all the possibility - a little like getting a new sketchpad and pen.

Favourite Westwell wine?
I absolutely love the Field '18. It tastes like some of the light juicy red Juran wines of which Adrian is so fond and is very versatile.


CLARE BUTCHER
Vineyard & Tour Supernova


Clare Butcher, Vineyard & Tour Supernova

What got you into wine?
FFor me, wine is synonymous with family and friends and the chatter over the table at mealtimes. I lived in Italy for 5 years from the age of 17 and this is where my passion for wine grew. Just about every home in Southern Italy has a "cantina" (a cellar) where all your homemade pickles, passatas and most importantly, homemade wine is stored. So my love for wine began on fruit ripened on the sun scorches soils of Campania.

What did you do before?
I spent the last 20 years as a Firefighter with The London Fire Brigade.

What do you love most about your job?
Most recently, I've loved sharing what we do at Westwell with all the wine lovers who come on our tours.

What is your favourite time of year in the vineyard?
Winter pruning time. Every vine is slightly different. I love choosing the best cane to lay down and the best spur for the following year. And so the cycle starts again.

Favourite Westwell wine?
Mouthwatering Ortega! What a beautiful wine. I absolutely love this grape.


JEANETTE LITHGO
Cellar Door & Production Manager


Jeanette Lithgo, Cellar Door & Production Manager

What got you into wine?
I’ve always enjoyed drinking wine and decided to take a WSET course to learn more about wine and why I liked the wines I did. The enthusiasm of my tutor - Debbie Ault - was infectious and made me want to learn more and to get involved in the industry in some way. A year later, I gave up my previous career and went travelling to figure out what I may be able to do and I was hooked. I then signed up for the BSc in Viticulture and Oenology at Plumpton College and here I am.

What did you do before?
I was a Project Manager and Accountant in the Chemical Industry.

What do you love most about your job?
It’s early days for me, but just being around a great group of people who obviously love their jobs, and having the opportunity to learn from them. It’s great to be involved in all aspects from talking to people visiting the vineyard about the fantastic wine we make at Westwell and passing on my knowledge and passion. I’m really looking forward to working harvest this year and actually making our wine, and working in the vineyard to ensure we have the best fruit possible.

What is your favourite time of year in the vineyard?
I always describe being in the vineyard as being in my happy place so any time in the vineyard is good for me. But I do love the spring when the flowers are starting to emerge.

Favourite Westwell wine?
Ortega Amphora - it was my first real foray into English wine and the reason why I wanted to work at Westwell.


ROSEMARY TAYLOR
Owner


Rosemary Taylor, Owner

What got you into wine?
My late husband, Rod, bought the vineyard as a new venture and something that the family could become involved with over time.

What do you love most about being involved?
Seeing the vineyard grow and the wines develop under the stewardship of Adrian and the team.

What is your favourite time of year in the vineyard?
Harvest is the obvious time, particularly on glorious days but also in May / June when the promise of things to come are at their height.

Favourite Westwell wine?
Pelegrim.