They are two of the most familiar sights in kitchen cupboards across the country: Lyle’s Golden Syrup and Tate & Lyle sugar.
Yet the ordinary Eastenders who helped build the Tate & Lyle brand and made the two founding families a fortune are largely forgotten by history. Now a new book, The Sugar Girls reveals the true story of the thousands of female workers, many of them as young as 14, who toiled in the firm’s two factories in Silvertown during their East End heyday in the 1940s and 1950s.
Duncan Barrett is a writer and editor specialising in biography and memoir. He recently edited First World War memoir The Reluctant Tommy. Nuala Calvi is a writer and journalist who has written for The Times, The Independent, The Sunday Express, the BBC, CNN and numerous Time Out books.
An authoritative and highly readable work of social history which brings vividly to life a fascinating part of East End life before it is lost forever. Melanie McGrath, author of the bestselling Silvertown
If it doesn’t become a TV series to rival Call The Midwife, I’ll take my tea with ten sugars. Bel Mooney, The Daily Mail (Book of the Week)