Ed­i­tor’s let­ter

EDP Norfolk - - EDP NORFOLK MAGAZINE - DOMINIC CAS­TLE, Ed­i­tor, EDP Nor­folk Mag­a­zine 01603 772758/07725 201153, dominic.cas­tle@archant.co.uk

Her­itage is a bit of a buzz word th­ese days, rather like ‘vin­tage’. It’s a good word; in fact we like it so much we’ve made it the loose theme of this is­sue.

Of course it means dif­fer­ent things to dif­fer­ent peo­ple, which is fine. The first thing folk tend to think of is old build­ings, or mu­se­ums, or aging relics, like the Rolling Stones.

But one of the most in­ter­est­ing things to emerge when we started putting the mag­a­zine to­gether was the ex­is­tence, in Nor­folk, of the na­tional advertising ar­chive.

None of us had even heard about it, which was a sur­prise, give that we’ve all been in the pub­lish­ing trade for quite a while. Ev­ery day you learn some­thing.

I was ex­plain­ing to a young per­son that, not many years ago, there was a choco­late fac­tory right in the heart of Nor­wich.

She was agog. Her jaw dropped and her mouth was open wide enough for me to have lobbed in a cou­ple of Tof­fos, had they still ex­isted and been to hand.

I ex­plained that the city cen­tre was treated to a de­li­ciously warm choco­latey aroma when the vats were go­ing at full chat and that a school trip to Rown­tree Mack­in­tosh was, unar­guably, the best thing that would ever hap­pen to a Nor­folk school­child. It was sim­ply a coach ride straight to heaven.

I re­mem­ber the ex­cite­ment of the ar­rival, the go­ing round the nec­es­sary dull bits (‘Here we use corn­flour to make the moulds for the soft-cen­tred choco­lates...’) Like we were in­ter­ested.

Jig­gling with im­pa­tience we’d wait, be­fore the guides even­tu­ally re­lented and let us hit the sam­ples. Fi­nally, gorged with Week­end choco­lates, Cara­mac, Mint Crack­nel, Ro­los, Munchies, ev­ery flavour of Toffo go­ing and glazed with sweet­ness we’d climb back on the bus, clutch­ing a goody bag in case the near di­a­betic lev­els of sugar we’d con­sumed needed top­ping up. It was the best day ever. Oddly, there were no con­cerns about child­hood obe­sity...

Now, of course, the tem­ple of sweet temp­ta­tion has been re­placed by a tem­ple of re­tail temp­ta­tion and mem­o­ries of that won­der­ful old fac­tory are a part of the city’s in­dus­trial her­itage. It may be wish­ful think­ing but some days I’m sure I can still catch a whiff of those glo­ri­ous, sweet aro­mas.

Sweet heaven – Rown­tree Mack­in­tosh’s fac­tory in 1969

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