The financial crisis in Britain in 1845 had severe ramifications on Ceylon’s coffee industry for more than a decade. Estates that had been purchased for Pounds Sterling 15,000 in 1843, were sold for Pounds Sterling 440, five years later. In 1854, the Planters Association was founded as the planters identified the need for a representative body in order to salvage their interests in a serious situation. The person elected to represent the Association as its first Chairman was Captain Keith Jolly.

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Historical Events

1867– James Taylor becomes the First Tea Planter

1867– James Taylor becomes the First Tea Planter

James Taylor, the supervisor of Loolecondera Estate plants the tea seedlings at his estate. The seedlings were provided by the nursery of the Peradeniya Botanical Gardens and were planted in just 19 acres.

1870 - Sir Charles De Soysa adopts tea plantation

1870 - Sir Charles De Soysa adopts tea plantation

As prospects of coffee began to look dull local planter Charles De Soysa started converting his plantations to tea. With the Ceylon Coffee Crash Soysa expanded his tea estates to include Guru Oya, Marigold, Hapugasmulle among others

1880 - Henry Randolph Trafford arrives in Sri Lanka and purchases Poyston Estate

1880 - Henry Randolph Trafford arrives in Sri Lanka and purchases Poyston Estate

Englishman Henry Randolph Trafford purchased the Poyston Estate and started the growth of coffee and Cinchona, later switching to tea in 1887

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