Our History

Womersley, the early years


The WOMERSLEY business was launched in 1979 by Martin and Aline Parsons from their home, Womersley Hall, in Yorkshire using a constructed single storey building that was previously used to store apples. After the war, this was then turned into a shop selling local crafts and herbal goods.

The shop was always busy, heaving with goods: herbal pillows, corn dollies, wood turning, glass, dried flowers, cards and masses more which lent the whole building to become a permanently fragrant air. With a long held love of herbs and a big kitchen garden, Martin was now in his element. He really loved developing herbal remedies and grew a huge number of herbs to make all the various sachets and oils.


Image of Martin and Aline Parsons.

One day, when Martin’s mum was visiting, she wondered whether the shop could sell her Mint Jelly. She had used the same recipe for many years, one which included green colouring! Aline gave it a go but, upon seeing the beautiful rich golden colour of the jelly, she decided to omit the green colouring. That was the first condiment produced by Womersley Foods and it proved popular enough that Martin and Aline soon decided to try other herbs in the garden to make more jellies... And the rest as they say is history.

Image of Martin Parsons holding a pepper in his garden.

Martin attributed his expert knowledge of speciality herbs to his family’s background. The Parsons family lived in Yorkshire for generations and is famous for their grand gardens and horticulture at Nymans in Sussex and Birr Castle in Ireland.

Martin’s instinctive ability to blend specialist herbs and sumptuous fruits with vinegar and sugar has created for home cooks and chefs a product of such versatility that they are rightly famous and have won numerous awards.

In 2009, Martin and Aline’s son, Rupert, took on the running of Womersley Foods. Since doing so, he has outsourced the production to a high quality professional kitchen as well as rebranding the company.

The making of fruit vinegars goes back many years and, at Womersley Foods, we decided to concentrate on making the taste of the fruits and herbs the key point of difference. We remain a family business even though we are now based in Oxfordshire and no longer in Yorkshire. The Parsons family has a long history of keen botanists, and we preserve these values of trying to enhance the natural flavours of the ingredients in our products and, by doing this, offer a key ingredient which can be used to transform many dishes.

A new chapter begins

2023 sees the Womersley business ownership transferred from the Parsons family to the Ashiru family led by Labaika to continue the legacy of the business and expand it for the next generation. Labaika, a passionate foodie himself, loves cooking and experimenting with different foods in the kitchen. With a background in branding and design working with different large FMCG brands as well as a cook in different restaurants in the past, Labaika brings his passion and enthusiasm for the business and its products to lead it to the next level growth and continue the legacy created by the Parsons family. 

 The wild flower border at Nymans

Our mission at Womersley Foods is to transform your food, enhance your taste experience and delight your taste buds; making cooking delicious food easy with our simple ingredients.

Womersley Foods Fruit Vinegar Range with Ingredients on a White Background sitting on top of a kitchen cutting board..

We make

I Believe Simple Ingredients With no Nasty Additives can be Delicious

Everything that we do at Womersley Foods is centred on our core principle of “enhancing your taste experience” to delight your taste buds. With so many products out there with unnecessary additives, we value the simplicity of our products and the enhancement they give to any dish without diluting the original flavour.

My passion for cooking delicious food

Womersley was one of the first artisan, hand-crafted and family owned fruit vinegar businesses in the UK. The brand has been trusted by its loyal fans for more than 40 years, thanks to the quality of the products.

With my passion for good food and my background in design, the Womersley brand and its products perfectly blend my two passions together. I am a passionate foodie; I love to cook and seeing people enjoy the food I cook. I still cook every day and now use the different Womersley products in my cooking.

Discover The Joy of Cooking with Womersley Fruit & Herb Vinegars and Jams.

We have made cooking easy with our range of simple, no nasties, more fruits, less sugar ingredients that will allow you to create delicious meals at home or in restaurants.