OTLEY AND DISTRICT MENíS FORUM
8th September 2016
We were treated to "The Sweet Fifties" by Tom Dixon in his talk
Tom is an expert on liquorish and its origins, particularly in Pontefract. It grows into tall plants with thick trunks and takes about 7 years to mature. The last crop to be harvested was in 1970 and it is now procured from hot countries where it matures faster.Tom was employed as an apprentice and then a boiler at the Wilkinsons factory in Pontifract.They employed 12 men and 800 women and he found this very pleasant !Each Pontefract cake was individually stamped into the shape we all know. Liquorish has many properties besides its use in sweets. Much is sold to the pharmaceutical industry for medical purposes. It is also included in Guinness and in times of war to soldiers have been given it to reduce
thirst. A Poem was written by John Betjeman extolling its virtues so it indeed famous.
On the 22nd September we will welcome J David Philip who will tell us of the history of Dacre, Son and Hartley. As usual 10 am at the Methodist church.