When custodians, Jessica and Surahn Sidhu, purchased the old almond orchard early in 2017, they had very little knowledge of nut farming but knew they wanted to raise their children in Willunga and take on an agricultural existence. They married in 2014 in the neighbouring town of McLaren Vale, and were drawn to the diversity of the region; from the beaches and the incredible vistas to the undeniable fertile energy.
Jessica worked for an acclaimed landscape design company, Taylor Cullity Lethlean, after completing her Bachelor of Architectural Design in 2008. It was through working at TCL that her passion for plants and sustainable design became ignited. Later, she went on to become a primary school teacher in Goolwa, where the couple designed and built their first property together.
Surahn spent 10 years on the road as a musician for acclaimed bands Empire Of The Sun, The Swiss and Flight Facilities and continues to write, record and produce records. In the midst of touring in 2012, he studied Permaculture. Having grown up surrounded by a family of vignerons and sheep, wheat and almond farmers, he too, had an eagerness to learn more about farming practice.
The two have been planning a move into sustainable small scale farming for some time, and Papershell is the result of a legacy plan that has been a combined grand ambition, drawn from their entire life of influences. Through this legacy planning, they hope to leave the land they are custodians of in a more fertile position, to sustain the generations to come.