Food Parcels after WW2

Readers of one of my favourite books 84, Charing Cross Road will recall that Helene Hanff sent parcels of food ordered from New York to the staff of the London bookshop from the late 1940’s.  She did this because she was aware of the severe food shortages that England faced for many years after the end of WW2. 

 Today, during another session of scanning old documents, I came across the inhouse magazine of Chiswick Products – the makers of Cherry Blossom Shoe Polish in London.  It was the Winter 1947 issue in which our grandfather was farewelled on his retirement after 40 years as one of their Lithographic Printers.  Three other members of the family also worked there over several years. 

 I was very moved to read the story of how the staff in Australia and South Africa wanted to send food parcels from each member of their staff – 79 from Australia and 165 from South Africa to the staff in London.  As there must have been many more staff than that number in England, it was decided to put in the names of all staff with 10 years service who had been there during the war and balloted the required number to receive the parcels.  I bet there were very mixed feelings that day in the factory as some received food they hadn’t seen since before the war and others went home empty handed.

1947 Chiswick Products magazine p.82-83

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Emigration with the Salvation Army

My father came to Australia in the 1920’s under the umbrella of the “Salvation Army Lads”. I’ve often wondered how a lad of 17 years from a big mill town in Cheshire found his way to Australia without his family. I’ve recently been in contact with the International Heritage Centre for the Salvation Army in London and they have sent me a couple of interesting booklets from that period advertising the emigration services of the Army. The Army had been sending people from the UK to Australia, Canada and New Zealand in great numbers since 1905 and apparently had a large organisation around the world dedicated to this work.

Under the heading of “Square Dinkum Opportunities” there is the following –
“Come over and give us a hand in this sunlit white man’s country. There’s room for you – thousands of you and we want clean British lads brim full of pluck and adaptability”

As they say the past is another country.

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Keep your stairs in good repair or else!

Gosh, things were tough in Chester in 1604.  I was browsing thru some court archives this week at the Cheshire Archives and Local Studies and these caught my eye.

27th Nov. 1604. Presentment by Jury.
For not coming to the church: Hamnet Benit, tanner, John Whitbees wife, innholder.

For making malt being not free: Mr. Marmeduk Whimchurch, foreigner, Mr. Thomas Harper, attorney in the Exchequer, Widow Edgerton in the Northgate Street.

In Bridgstreet: John Granooe, sherman, for the stairs belonging to his house being broken.

Mr. Roger Horlstone’s stairs next to John Granooe’s also broken.

John Rigmaiden for his cart standing in Copings lane.

Mr. Midelton, Mr. Casse and Thomas Lynicar for their stairs wanting rails on the one side.

John Lea’s stair want rails on both sides.

Mr. Robart Fletcher’s stairs are not railed.
In Commonhale lane
Salomon Smith for letting dung lie at his stable side without in the lane.
Thomas Fletcher, Alderman, for the same.
John Doole, butcher, for the like offence.

Mr. Richard Rathborne for leaving his cart in the lane so that people may take harm at night.

Tho. Woods for suffering dirt to lie against his stable.

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Leech jars

I’ve been reading a great novel about apothercaries in England in the early 1800’s and there was mention of taking leeches from the leech jar.  Of course, I had to google that and I was blown away by how attractive the jars were.

image

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