During the 1980s Dualit benefited from government export grants and attended European trade shows, bringing their product to a wider audience. The factory had to expand to cope with increasing demand, stemming from both the European exposure and the trends at the time. In 1989 Max Gort-Barten was awarded a CBE for services to the British manufacturing industry.
A decade of innovation followed in which Dualit launched their first cordless kettle. Products were re-engineered and re-housed in the Dualit style. In 1999 the company used space shuttle technology to develop the Proheat toaster element, winnning a Millenium award.
With the death of Gort-Barten in 2003, Dualit moved to new premises, in Crawley, West Sussex. Production continues at the site today.
The people behind Journal de Nimes were fortunate enough to visit the Grenson factory in Rushden, Northamptonshire, yesterday. Welook forward to seeing a full report of the visit in their publication due out next year.
In the 60s, as the range of toasters grew, Dualits were to be found in commercial kitchens across the UK and even made it on to the QE2.
A three slot version was developed specifically for John Lewis in the 70s. Later in the decade, Dualit employed a Royal College of Art design graduate. The styling of the new ranges continued to find favour with retailers.
(Fig 1. Front cover of a 1928 Lea & Perrins cookbook)
According to a couple of British newspapers, the original Lea & Perrins recipe was found in a skip.
Brian Keogh, an accountant for the Worcester sauce manufacturer, discovered the encoded handwritten notes in two leather bound folios twenty years ago, The Express states.
Following Keogh's death, his daughter retained the notes, amongst other documents he had collected. The recipe is now to be put on display at Worcester City Museum.
The museum is analysing the handwriting to check that the recipe is authentic. 'Not even the staff knew the recipe, only parts of it, which would account for the different handwriting,' David Nash, collections officer, told The Sun.
(Fig 2. Conveyor belt for crates at Lea & Perrins factory)
Ian McMillan enjoys the 'sonerous concentration' of The Whitechapel Bell Foundry, the makers of Big Ben.
This BBC Radio 4 documentary includes a great interview with master founder Alan Hughes, who talks about visiting bell towers as a child with his father and his route to employment at the foundry. 'I decided to join the company in a moment of absent mindedness, it never occurred to me that I would do anything else.'
Documentary available until Tuesday 10th November at 2pm on BBC iPlayer (click title to listen to the documentary.)
Founder of Dualit, Max Gort-Barten, the son of an inventor, served five years in WWII before buying a factory in Camberwell, south London, to manufacture his products. The utilitarian design of Dualit's toasters is instantly recognisable and the hallmarks have barely changed since the first patent was issued in 1946.
In 1952 Gort-Barten designed a new, commercial six slice toaster with mechanical timer and manual eject. The residents of Picton Street, SE5, and the entire Gort-Barten family were involved with its production.
In 1954 the Government compulsory purchased the factory and gave Gort-Barten money to build new premises off of Old Kent Road (see image one in Scrapbook Pt. 2, below.)