Born at Lighteach Farm in Whitchurch, Shropshire, she attended Whitchurch High School and later went on to Reaseheath College. There she learnt to make cheese. After leaving college she met farmer Lancelot Appleby, whom she married 16 October 1940. She made the Lighteach cheese on her wedding day. After raising her children she returned to cheese-making using her own recipe. She used unpasteurised milk and wrapped the cheese in calico binding instead of wax. Appleby always said that wax does not allow the cheese to breathe.
She originally sold the cheese through the Milk Marketing Board. In the early 1980s she started using the family name. Appleby was one of the few cheesemakers to ignore industrial methods and stick to original methods. Other cheesemakers turned to the new methods following competition from supermarkets. In 1982 she cut ties with the Milk Marketing Board.
Lance Appleby died in 2003 and her son, Robert, died in 2002. Lucy Appleby died on 24 April 2008.
- Walley, Edward (31 December 1940). "22nd Annual Lighteach and 13th Annual Petsey Report". New Agricultural Labourers Settlement Scheme. 22: 4.
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