Friday, 4 July 2008

Sweetie Time

When I had a proper job in an agency, it was the custom on Friday afternoons to get shed loads of sweets in, usually a precursor to one of the juniors being sent out to the local off licence, itself a limbering-up period before hitting the pub in St.John's Wood. So I thought I'd revive the sweets end of things by sharing these jars of goodies with you, shot through the glass of Britcher & Rivers' Rye sweetshop. They remind me that Fox's Glacier Mints were made in Leicester and had a neon polar bear on the gable end of their factory (or did I imagine it?); that one of my favourite Liquorice Allsorts is available on its own as a Pascal Spog; and that I never did see the point of trying to eat a plastic space ship with a tiny spot of sherbet in it. Have the Anglican brethren amongst us noted how much communion wafers have the same pointless flavour? Minus a holy shot of sherbet, of course. However much we're reduced to picking up Revels and Maltesers when we're queuing-up to mortgage ourselves for a gallon of petrol, or slinging catering-size bags of Jelly Babies into supermarket trollies, isn't it encouraging that there are still shops like Britcher & Rivers that unscrew jars of sweets and dish the contents into metal weighing scoops? I'd say more, but it is Friday and at least one local round here opens at five. Have a good weekend.

18 comments:

Fred Fibonacci said...

There's a shop like this in Deal. Fibonacci Minor insists we pop in on the last day of a visit. He fills red and white striped paper bags with luridly coloured sweets and sticky string and then eats the lot on the way home. The sugar normally sends him to sleep somewhere near Canterbury. Does this mean he'll work in advertising?

Peter Ashley said...

It certainly does Fred. And you've just given me an idea for a new sweet. A mixture of toffee imbedded with hundreds and thousands and called Canterbury Pilgrims.

Philip Wilkinson said...

Didn't realise those rather rubbery allsorts covered in tiny ball bearings were called Pascal Spogs – whatever can that be about? Personally I prefer the coconut rolls. And sherbet fountains, the only white powder for me.

Ten Inch Wheeler said...

My uncle and auntie owned a sweet shop, which was their converted front room. Jars of Coltsfoot, Yorkshire Mixture and Jonas Bottomley's "famed" Mint Rock, and "spanish" - that's liquorice from anyone outside of God's Own County. They may have been the last shop in the country to sell measures of broken biscuits. When they retired about ten years ago, they changed it back and renamed their house 'Dunselyn'.

A F-A said...

These jars of sweets are not so uncommon 'oop Norrf' - mainly because (unlike the affluent Sarrf) locals here can only afford to buy an ounce of this and an ounce of that, usually with the winnings from the local whippet races. This has been aided by unscrupulous Lancashire traders buying the whole back stock of such manufacturers as Callard and Bowser, Sharps, Spangles etc, and trading them out on the local markets....

By the way, if you are ever tempted by the offerings of the (alleged) Oldest Sweet Shop in the World at Pateley Bridge, please don't be. It is owned by one of the most unpleasant persons I have ever met in my life.

Peter Ashley said...

Well, I can see I have opened up a can of worms (or jar of Wriggly Fruits) here. I never knew the World of Sweets was such a minefield. Watch Out! You nearly trod on a Butterscotch Bon Bon.

Philip Wilkinson said...

Odd, by the way, to catch a glimpse of your nose between the Sherbet Strawberries and the Large Pear Drops. I see you'd removed your suit of armour to make the intake of gobstoppers more straightforward.

Peter Ashley said...

What a fright for everyone, sorry. And that genie rising up out of the Hundreds & Thousands jar....

Jon Dudley said...

How clever of Mr Wilkinson to spot our elusive blogger. Looking rather like some of those early 'spirit' photographs, amongst the ectoplasm it is definitely our man.

By the way, what happened to the tubes in Sherbert Fountains? Has the tooling become so worn that it fails to produce a hole through the liquorice any more. Suck as I might I can't seem to draw any of the white powder through...maybe I should be using rolled up fifty pound notes instead? I shall have to resort to Sherbert Dabs...at least you can get a good measure of Sherbert by licking. Oh no, what have I said, I feel a Camilla post coming on...

Toby Savage said...

I just love the 21st Century photographers pose. Gone are the days the slight crouch, holding an old Leica M2 to the eye, left hand fingers cupped underneath the Leitz 50mm f1.2, fingers of the right hand ready to release the shutter and capture a fleeting moment of life, Cartier-Bresson style. Now we all lean back, desperately trying to focus tired eyes on a screen the size of a cigarette card, oblivious to the fact that the picture will be pin sharp and cropable in Photoshop, with, or without our input.

Jon Dudley said...

How true! Do you think that as our eyesight gets worse they will make extensions so that we can hold the screen ever further away as some of us do already with newspapers. By the way I recommend the Photoshop add-on 'Get Ashley' which with a click of the mouse reveals himself in any shot containing reflective surfaces. My favourite though is 'make younger' which when combined with the healing tool has enhanced several of my own self-portraits.

A F-A said...

Personally, I am deeply concerned with the subliminal message spelt out in the letters of the ABC jar...I can just make out "j-O-N-something-something-something-something-C-something-M-I-L-something-something".
What can it all mean? Is this the Devil's work?

Jon Dudley said...

Spooky!

Toby Savage said...

And what on earth are 'Fizz Balls' Ron?

Fred Fibonacci said...

And what's Michael Heseltine doing above the 100s and thousands?

Camilla Jessop said...

A lovely photo Mr Ashley. It has made me realise that it has been ages since I sucked on a good Gob Stopper.

Jon Dudley said...

...but it was worth waiting for!

Peter Ashley said...

Camilla, I really shan't tell you again.