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Caterer – still supporting the trade more than a century on

08 June 2006

Builders at the Crown hotel in Harrogate, North Yorkshire, have stumbled upon an amazing historical find - pages from a 113-year-old edition of Caterer and Hotelkeeper.

While the builders were removing the sash windows during the hotel's multimillion pound refit, copies of The Caterer & Hotelkeeper's Gazette - a forerunner to Caterer - from 1893 were found stuffed between the frames.

Remarkably, some of the colour advert inserts from one of the oldest trade publications still in print have been preserved and have lost hardly any of their reproduction quality.

The hotel's owner, Peter Grazier, pictured left holding the discovery, said the pages would now be carefully preserved and form part of a display outlining the renovation process at the Crown. "It's quite remarkable to think these pages have been in the window frames for more than 100 years," he added.

Just to show how times have changed, the back of the advert for John Symons & Co's Sparkling Devonshire Cider reads: "If laid down like Champagne for a month or two after travelling it will be found a very pleasant and refreshing drink. Taken in moderate quantities it is mildly stimulating and will not upset the digestive system, but rather aids its action. It is much preferable as a drink to inferior foreign wines and is one of our best native beverages."

Caterer editor Mark Lewis said: "This find reminds us that Caterer and Hotelkeeper has been helping hospitality for well over a century now. Being used as a draught excluder may be an unconventional way to support a business, but we're happy to have been of use!"

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