Bath Rugby and Thatchers Cider have toasted the renewal of their partnership agreement with a new special edition cider, pressed from apples grown in an orchard at the team’s training ground, Farleigh House.
The 2019/20 rugby campaign marks an eighth year of partnership between the Blue, Black and White and the fourth-generation Somerset cidermakers. The apples were hand-picked by the Bath Rugby players and the Thatchers team led by Thatchers farm manager Chris Muntz-Torres, from the trees which were planted at Farleigh House to mark the start of the partnership back in 2011.
Chris said: “It’s been great to get the players involved with helping us make Farleigh Cider, from picking the apples to giving the cider their seal of approval. The apples at Farleigh House have made a really interesting blend of cider and one that we’re sure will be enjoyed.”
Thatchers has made a limited run of 120 bottles of Farleigh Cider. The bottles will be signed by the squad and auctioned, with all proceeds made from this exciting project donated to the Bath Rugby Foundation and Thatchers Foundation to help raise money to support local communities throughout Somerset.
Thatchers head cidermaker, Richard Johnson, who tasted the new cider with the players, said: “At 5.5% abv, Farleigh Cider is a fantastic union of varieties. Like a scrum the apples used are a blend of strength and guile and all have their unique contribution. Pour this cider into your favourite cup and let it tackle your taste buds!”
Through its partnership agreement which has been renewed for the next three years, Thatchers will continue to be a key part of the matchday experience as the Club’s Official Cider at the Rec and support milestone activations such as The Clash – Bath Rugby’s showpiece fixture at Twickenham Stadium in April.
Thatchers will retain exclusive pouring rights for Thatchers Gold and Thatchers Haze, naming rights to the current North Stand at the Rec and prominent branding on the back of the match shirts.
Bath Rugby’s Chief Commercial Officer, Ben Wells, said: “Bath Rugby and Thatchers both have strong roots in Somerset but we also share ambitions to grow nationally. We’re proud to support Thatchers in becoming one of the UK’s leading cider brands and are thrilled to continue the relationship with a partner with whom we share many values. It’s also great news for our supporters that they can continue to enjoy Thatchers throughout the next three seasons.”
Thatchers’ Managing Director, Martin Thatcher, added: “To toast this partnership with our special edition Farleigh Cider is a really exciting experience. For the Bath Rugby players to have been involved in picking the apples, tasting the cider as it was being made, and now being able to auction the cider in aid of good causes, has been a great way to mark the special relationship we have with the Club. This is a cider that’s been eight years in the making.”