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Key People in our team


Joe Cottingham joined the business in 2000 and is responsible for crop production, managing the packhouse and working with the large retailers. Joe has introduced a wide range of improvements to Watts Farms that have raised productivity, broadened the product ranges and helped to improve customer service.

From developments in production techniques to increasing the length of the growing season by using covers, mulches and tunnels, and modernising irrigation systems across the farms Joe has made a deep and lasting impact on the business. And his efforts were rewarded in 2008 when he was named Young Grower of the Year, aged just 34.


Mike has always been in the food and farming industry.

Starting work at 14 for an importer and exporter, he went to work in London’s Spitafields market where he quickly rose to become one their top salesman.

With a keen eye on the market, a great network of contacts and lots of experience, sales was his forte.

Today he and his son Ed are responsible for the foodservice part of the business where their blend of experience and enthusiasm complement each other well.


Avril took over the farm when she was in her twenties.

No stranger to hard work, Avril would regularly drive lorries into London, pack spinach by hand and shift irrigation pipes.

Today Avril is involved in key decision making and is responsible for the staff’s welfare.

During the summer months, Watts Farms accommodate large numbers of foreign students through university schemes and Avril oversees this programme.


As Mike and Avril’s son, Ed’s understanding of the farm business began from an early age.

Later on, throughout his degree and during medical school, Ed started, ran and sold a number of successful businesses.

One of which was one of the first companies to supply chocolate fountain machines to the events industry.

His thirst for a challenge and increasing entrepreneurial flair meant that a career in medicine was looking unlikely.

So once his studies finished, Ed was brought in and is now responsible for the foodservice sector.