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Written by: Georgina Ingham | Posted 30 March 2009 14:51

I couldn’t believe my luck the other day when a huge parcel arrived for me; now that’s always a lovely thing to happen I’m sure you’ll all agree; but this was more interesting. On opening the cardboard packaging I found a lovely wooden chest filled to the brim with sweets galore.

Not just any sweeties mind you, but, old-fashioned, hard to get hold of sweeties that bring back not only memories of my childhood but that of my parents and grandparents too. A veritable treasure chest of fond memories so to speak. 

When I showed this gorgeous box to my friends over on Violets Pantry, the food forum I frequent, they immediately said it looked like a chest of buried treasure but alas to me it didn’t portray that to me. Instead I immediately thought of stories of children at boarding school and their ‘tuck’ boxes; happen I’ve read too many Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl books during my formative years.

So why did I get such a treat? Well I was contacted last week by Local Food Advisor via this blog to see if I would be happy to display I link to their site in my sidebar; there was no doubt in my mind about this – of course I would! How could I not help promote this wonderful site about local food and local producers! They promote local producers and regional food, Farmers markets, regional recipes and specialities, as well as local food restaurants. They are also working with the Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST), Campaign To Protect Rural England (CPRE) and the British Food Trust to encourage producers to use high animal welfare and environmental methods and to support British producers, in addition to this they list award winning producers free of charge on their website; which I think is a fantastic thing too and something that should (and needs to be) supported.

While replying to the email about displaying a badge I began to discuss product testing (as it is something I have done before); hence I got the chance to receive and review one of the sweetie chests!

So back to the job at hand, the sweets. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw the number of varieties and the quantity of sweets included, I was really expecting a few tasters, not such a giant box of goodies. The sweets came from The Oldest Sweet Shop in Britain. The shop is located in the picturesque Yorkshire Dales town of Pateley Bridge and is housed in a 17th century building. The interior is packed with over 200 traditional glass jars containing every conceivable type of confectionery; many of which I found in the chest. Oh I’d love to go visit the shop itself but any sweetie cravings could be satisfied by ordering online at their excellent site. A video of the shops history can also be found here.

I’ve been very restrained so far only having eaten a highland toffee bar, a couple of refreshers and some sour cola balls. My favourites are of course the flying saucers but I haven’t allowed myself to open the gorgeous packaging yet, maybe I’ll open them on Thursday, ’tis my birthday after all. 

I also received a mouse-mat from Local Food Adviser and a stick of rock (oh yes I’ve eaten that, and very nice it was too).

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