Whether in wartime or peace, tales of love, laughter and hardship from the girls in the Rowntrees factory in Yorkshire
“On a warm Monday morning in 1932, just two days after leaving school, fourteen-year-old Madge was about to join her nine brothers and sisters at Rowntree’s. The smell of chocolate was in the air but as she walked up the road, her footsteps slowed at the daunting thought of what lay ahead…”
From the 1930s through to the 1980s, as Britain endured war, depression, hardship and strikes, the women at the Rowntree’s factory in York kept the chocolates coming. This is the true story of The Sweethearts, the women who roasted the cocoa beans, piped the icing and packed the boxes that became gifts for lovers, snacks for workers and treats for children across the country. More often than not, their working days provided welcome relief from bad husbands and bad housing, a community where they could find new confidence, friendship and when the supervisor wasn’t looking, the occasional chocolate.
About the author
Neil Hanson is the author of many acclaimed works of narrative history including The Custom of the Sea, The Dreadful Judgement, The Confident Hope of a Miracle and The Unknown Soldier. He lives in Yorkshire with his family.