All about apples, pears, plums, and cherries - and orchards where they are grown

Golden Spire apple

Golden Spire was intrroduced in the Victorian period, primarily as a cooking apple.  It was discovered in Lancashire but spread to Gloucestershire where it was known as Tom Matthews and grown for cider production.

It remains popular in England as a garden variety, and is notable for its distinctive cider-like flavour.  The flesh is juicy and it cooks to a puree with an excellent apple flavour.

Golden Spire identification photos

UK National Fruit Collection
UK National Fruit Collection
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  • Golden Spire
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Visitor reviews

  • 27 Feb 2021  Kristian KøVener,  AGDER, Norway
    Even in Norway, homeland of damp, cool weather, including infrequent summers, this cultivar, more or less, every second year, displays impressive elongated fruits of enjoyable fresh taste, comparable to the high, but rare autumn blue skies.
  • 06 Dec 2015  Colindun,  ROSS & CROMARTY, United Kingdom
    I've just had an apple tree in a local hedgerow identified as. golden Spire by Brogdale. It's about 10 miles north of Inverness, and I haven't the foggiest how it got here. Now that I know what it is I may try growing some from piosnext year.
  • 10 Nov 2012  Tim Collins,  United Kingdom
    My mother has an old Golden Spire in her orchard. The fruit has a very distinctive, firm flesh with a slightly sour aftertaste - cidery, as some other reviews have said. It is an excellent eating apple, as well as being good for purees and baking
  • 21 Oct 2012  Paul Stamper,  NORTHAMPTONSHIRE, United Kingdom
    My grandparents had one in their large garden at Wollaston, Northants. It was probably planted in the late 19th century when the house was built. I knew it in the 1960s when I was a boy, and well remember its distinctive smell and taste (my mum, in her 80s, has just recently told me the variety). I intend to plant one in my garden. One practical point: as I remember, it's not a great keeper - one to be used early and enjoyed.
  • 05 Oct 2009  Clive,  YORK, United Kingdom
    There's one growing in Kylemore Abbey near Galway. I filched a couple of windfalls, lovely fresh taste. The tree looked great too, covered in fantastic lichens
  • 26 Oct 2008  Allison,  GLOUCESTERSHIRE, United Kingdom
    My neighbour has just brought us over a load of these. They're oddly mis-shapen apples, with greenie yellow skin and pale, creamy white flesh.There is a little sharpness, but it's not unpleasant, with a cidery back-taste as previously mentioned. Eight of us have tried, including my two year-old, and we all agree, it's a thumbs up for eating/cooking.
  • 11 Oct 2008  Alan Mountney,  STAFFORDSHIRE, United Kingdom
    We have this variety growing in our garden and happily eat them straight of the branch. Good taste, sweet but with a 'cidery' hint to it. Crops well, unfortunately the wasps also love the apples.
  • 18 Sep 2008  Jaime,  LANCASTER, United States
    Just tried one of these - I agree ! Fabulous cidery back-taste, perfectly edible (or at least the one i have just eaten was!). Probably best to classify as a 'Cooking/Eating' variety. Didn't this apple originate in Lancashire?

Tree register

United Kingdom


Harvest records for this variety

2016 season

  • 1st week October  2016  - tree owned by Dave in Preston, United Kingdom

2013 season

  • 2nd week September  2013  - tree owned by DoorusOrchard in Kinvara, Ireland


  • Species: Malus domestica
  • Parentage: Unknown
  • Originates from: Lancashire, England, United Kingdom
  • Introduced: 1850
  • Orange Pippin Cultivar ID: 1163
  • UK National Fruit Collection accession: 2000-039
  • Some historical details taken with kind permission from 'The New Book of Apples' by Joan Morgan and Alison Richards , illustrated by Elisabeth Dowle, published by Ebury Press, 2002.


  • Fruit colour: Yellow / Gold


  • Uses: Cooking
  • Uses: Juice
  • Uses: Hard cider
  • Cooking result: Puree
  • Flavour quality: Good
  • Flavour style: Sharper


  • Flowering period: Early season
  • Flowering group: 1
  • Fertility: Self-fertile
  • Ploidy: Diploid
  • Vigour: Weak growing
  • Gardening skill: Very easy
  • Attractive features: Attractive tree


  • Scab  - Some susceptibility

Where to buy trees

The following tree nurseries offer Golden Spire apple trees for sale:

  • Keepers Nursery
    United Kingdom  More >>

Where to buy fresh fruit

United Kingdom


  • Apples of England (1948)
    Author: Taylor

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