Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Guest Writer – Robbie Cheadle – The York Chocolate Story – Part Two – Terry’s of York and Craven’s

Delighted that over the next four weeks, author Robbie Cheadle will be sharing the The York Chocolate story with us, following her recent trip to the UK.. And I will be featuring a different Sir Chocolate Story and Cookbook each week. You can find part one HERE

The York Chocolate Story – Part Two – Terry’s of York and Craven’s

I know Terry’s due to is famous Chocolate Orange product. I had no idea that Terry’s products came from York and I also didn’t know that Craven’s humbugs are also a creation of this city.
Terry’s of York

Joseph Terry came from a farming background and trained for several years as an apothecary before opening his own shop in Walmgate. In 1823, he married Harriet Atkinson, a relative of Robert Berry, who owned a confectionery business in St Helen’s Square, and made a decision to give up his Walmgate operation and join the Berry business. Shortly afterwards, Robert Berry died and his son, George, joined with Joseph in a business named Terry & Berry. George decided to leave the business in 1828 and Joseph carried on alone, renaming the business Joseph Terry and Company.

Joseph built a reputation for cakes and comfits, sugared sweets, candied peel, marmalade and medicated lozenges. He started using the railways to send small quantities of his products to towns all over the North of England, into the Midlands and down to Luton and London.

By the time Joseph died in 1850, the Terry name was becoming known around Britain. His son, Joseph junior, built on the foundations of the company and turned it into a major concern. Joseph Jnr moved most of the production to a factory on the banks of the River Ouse at Clementhorpe.

In 1926, the Chocolate Works factory, next to York Racecourse, was opened to house all of Terry’s production in York. It was in this factory that some of Terry’s most famous brands came into existence, including All Gold in 1930 and the Chocolate Orange in 1931.

In 1993, Kraft acquired Terry’s and on 30 September 2005 the York factory was closed with production moving to other plants of Europe.

Chocolate Orange Christmas pudding

Below is a picture of a chocolate Christmas pudding I made using a Terry’s Chocolate Orange as the centre (I also made one using a giant gobstopper as the centre) and then covered with chocolate covered biscuit balls, cut in half, and attached using Royal icing. I then covered the ball with melted white chocolate and attached the fondant holly leaves and red berries.

The Craven family

Mary Ann Craven (nee Hick) was born on 15 September 1826, the daughter of Joseph Hick who, together with a partner, had set up a confectionery business called Kilner & Hick confectioners.

Mary Ann married another confectioner by the name of Thomas Craven resulting in two of the families which had gradually been building up the confectionery business in York over the past 50 years being united.

Thomas Craven had been an apprentice to Berry & Hide, a confectionery owned by George Berry, the previous partner of Joseph Terry, and his brother-in-law, Thomas Hide. After seven years as an apprentice, Thomas Craven bought the right to trade in York when he became a Freeman in 1940.

Mary Ann’s father died on 20 February 1860, followed two years later by her husband, Thomas. Mary Ann was left a widow with three small children to bring up on her own. She managed to do this while running the two businesses which she combined and ran as one until her death in 1900.

In 1881, Mary Ann’s son, Joseph, had become a partner in the firm which became known as M.A. Craven & Son. The firm earned a reputation for the quality of its toffees and humbugs and other sugar confectionery which were produced at their main factory at their Coppergate site.

In 1904, Joseph bought the recipe for French almonds during a trip to Paris and these proved to be a great money spinner for Craven’s.

In 1966, Craven’s moved its factory to the outskirts of York. The Coppergate site was eventually excavated, revealing evidence of Viking occupation and leading to the opening of the Jorvik Viking Centre on that site in 1984.

By the 1980s, Craven’s was producing approximately 5 000 tonnes of confectionery a year. The most popular of its products included French Almonds, Humbugs and Mary Ann Creamy Toffees.

Craven’s was eventually bought out by Tangerine Confectionery where its brands joined the ranks with other classics such as the Sherbet Fountain and Wham Bar.

If you are visiting York then you cannot miss a visit to museum:

Sir Chocolate and the Baby Cookie Monster story and cookbook

About the book

Sir Chocolate and Lady Sweet find a lost baby cookie monster. Join them on an adventure to return the baby to its mother and learn how to make some of their delicious recipes at the same time.

A five star review for the book by Colin Garrow

Book 2 of Robbie Cheadle’s Sir Chocolate series features Sir Chocolate and Lady Sweet in a hunt to find a lost baby cookie monster. As well as the story, we learn how to make a selection of delicious recipes, including Easy Sausage Rolls and Chocolate Butter Icing.

I bought the paperback version of this charming children’s book mainly because the Kindle format of picture books rarely reproduce the images satisfactorily (though to be fair I didn’t look at the ebook version, so can’t say for sure). The story is in rhyme and tells of the search for the missing Baby Cookie Monster, including a trip in a chocolate cake car and characters such as the Vanilla Fudge Bird.

The pictures of all the edible characters show up well and compliment the story. The recipes too, are delightful and are laid out in a way that makes them easy to understand for young kids.

Robbie Cheadle started writing these books when her son Michael came up with ideas for the characters. Robbie’s website is a great resource for cooks and kids, as it includes videos of some of her other recipes as well as tutorials on fondant art and mouth-watering images of the World of Sir Chocolate. Too yummy indeed!

Read the reviews and buy the book:

And Amazon UK:

A selection of other Sir Chocolate stories co-written with Michael Cheadle and other books by Robbie Cheadle

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

And on Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Robbie on Goodreads:

About Robbie Cheadle

Robbie, short for Roberta, is an author with five published children’s picture books in the Sir Chocolate books series for children aged 2 to 9 years old (co-authored with her son, Michael Cheadle), one published middle grade book in the Silly Willy series and one published preteen/young adult fictionalised biography about her mother’s life as a young girl growing up in an English town in Suffolk during World War II called While the Bombs Fell (co-authored with her mother, Elsie Hancy Eaton). All of Robbie’s children’s book are written under Robbie Cheadle and are published by TSL Publications. Robbie has recently branched into adult horror and supernatural writing and, in order to clearly differential her children’s books from her adult writing, these will be published under Roberta Eaton Cheadle. Robbie has two short stories in the horror/supernatural genre included in Dark Visions, a collection of 34 short stories by 27 different authors and edited by award winning author, Dan Alatorre. These short stories are published under Robbie Cheadle.

I have been drawn to the horror and supernatural genres of books all my life. At the age of ten years old I embarked on reading Stephen King’s books including The Shining and Salem’s Lot. These books scared me so much I had to put them aside by 6P.M. in the evening in order to get a good night’s sleep but they also fascinated me. I subsequently worked my way through all of Stephen King’s earlier books as well as those of Dean R. Koontz.

I have read a large number of classics, in particular, I enjoy Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Charles Dickens and the works of the Bronte sisters.

I am hugely interested in the history of the United Kingdom as well as the mythology and tales of the paranormal that are abundant on this intriguing European island.

Connect to Robbie Cheadle

Website/Blog Roberta Writes:

My thanks to Robbie for sharing this series with us and please join us again next Monday for Part Three of York’s Chocolate Story..



71 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Guest Writer – Robbie Cheadle – The York Chocolate Story – Part Two – Terry’s of York and Craven’s

  1. I love York and I love chocolate oranges — what a stroke of genius coming up with that idea and you can wrap it in the foil, back in the box without anyone noticing you have eaten a segment or four… But so sad when family companies get swallowed up by other companies and leave their home city.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. You had me at “Terry’s Chocolate Orange,” a personal favourite. 🙂 That chocolate Christmas pudding looks amazing! 😋 Fascinating history behind it all. Thanks for the education. Wish I were close enough to visit the museum.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I have to admit I was unfamiliar with Terry’s orange chocolate, but it sounds superb, and the history was interesting (I just got done watching a program that included how Hershey’s was started).
    And Robbie, that confection you made looks delicious!
    Thanks, ladies!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Hubby is from York and at one time most of his family worked at one of the chocolate factories, aunt, uncles, cousins etc. He gets a chocolate orange in his stocking every year. Yes, I can get them in Spain too.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I’m a fan of Terry’s chocolate oranges and have introduced quite a few people (including one of my goddaughters) to them. It’s fascinating how many sweet creators ended up in that city. Not that I blame them. It’s a lovely place. Thanks for the information, Robbie! Great post and great collaboration with Sally! Now we’re all going off to get some sweets!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – Jazz, Winter Soups, Chocolate, New books, reviews and funnies | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

  7. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Guest Writer – Robbie Cheadle – The York Chocolate Series – Part Three – Chocolate in wartime Second Anglo Boer War 1899 – 1902- | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

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