It is with great sadness to announce the sudden passing of Roy Martin of Martin’s Lane Vineyard on Friday 16th June.

Roy was the founding partner of Martin’s Lane at Stow Maries in the Crouch Valley, Essex. In 2008 he started a small vineyard and trialled the growing of grapes for sparkling wine. Little did he know at the time that the vineyard would become a key producer of high-quality fruit for the production of still wines. He continued to expand the acreage up until the most recent plantings in 2020.

Roy’s tireless work since the inception had been the driving force in turning a moderately sized vineyard (currently 21 acres) into a highly respected wine label and source of high-quality grapes supplied to wineries across our industry, as well as producing their own label single estate wines.

Martins Lane was a central feature in a recent article on about the emergence of the Crouch Valley as England’s premier region for high quality still wines.

A true pioneer in the evolution of the English wine industry, Roy leaves a lasting legacy – he was the driving force behind the development of the Crouch Valley as a significant wine-growing area, now widely considered to be the emerging area for growing top quality grapes for English still wines.

One of England’s leading winemakers commented on Friday night that Roy was “a big part of the growth of Essex as a premium wine producing county”.

@ martinslanevyd