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York – Britain’s Home of Chocolate Celebrating National Chocolate Week (14 – 20 October 2013)

The UK’s Home of Chocolate is celebrating the sweet stuff in style during National Chocolate Week. In a city rich with over 150 years of chocolate history visitors can experience seven days of chocolate indulgence. Whether sweet-tooth fans decide to taste, make, drink, watch or study their way through the home of chocolate, they’ll step into a feast of taste sensations and sweet history, discovering new secrets and stories about York’s most famous export at every turn.

Gillian Cruddas, MBE, Chief Executive of Visit York said, “there’s a real chocolate revival going on in the city, with new independent chocolatiers, such as the York Cocoa House, our chocolate visitor attraction and a chocolate walking trail. We’re delighted to have so much to offer our visitors during National Chocolate Week.”

The city is staging a 'pick ‘n’ mix' of events, exhibitions and activities. Here’s a selection:

RETRO REVIVAL (14 – 20 October 2013)

Chocolate favourites that have long been in ‘sweetie heaven’ will be brought back to life exclusively for Chocolate Week in York.

Take your taste buds on a trip down memory lane at York’s CHOCOLATE Story as chocolatiers re-create some of the nation’s favourite flavours. Long lost retro sweets such as 80s favourite, Texan Bar, the mint fondant centred Pyramint with its distinct pyramid shape, chewy Toffos and Quality Street’s coffee cream have all provided inspiration for a unique tasting event at one of the city’s newest attractions throughout the week.


Researchers at the Borthwick Institute of Archives at York University, Kerstin Doble and Francesca Taylor, have found the original recipe for Terry’s Dessert Chocolate Apple. The famous recipe has remained hidden for more than 80 years. Terry’s Chocolate Apple predated the iconic Terry’s Chocolate Orange, which is still produced in the city today. The secret recipe has remained hidden since the chocolate apple was first produced in 1926 and will at last be unveiled in time for Chocolate Week. Chocolatiers at the visitor attraction, York’s CHOCOLATE Story, will use the recipe to inspire the long forgotten flavours exclusively for chocolate week. The Borthwick archives are one of the biggest repositories for archives outside of London, and include the archives of Rowntrees and Terry’s, the famous York confectionery companies.

SOLVE A MYSTERY (12-20 October 2013)

Researchers from the University of York’s Borthwick Archives are calling upon the public to help them solve a mystery – who are the women featured in a recently unveiled collection of 1950s portraits known as the Aero Girls? Originally commissioned by Rowntree for use in Aero chocolate advertising from 1951-1957, the figurative paintings are called Anna, Alice, Wendy, The Country Girl, The Art Student – but are these fictitious characters or real women?

To help unravel the Aero Girls mystery and unearth new information about these little-known paintings, the researchers are holding an exhibition at York’s Mansion House during Chocolate Week (12-20 October).

STEP BACK IN TIME (3-20 October 2013)

Nearly 200 actors and community volunteers from three of region’s most dynamic theatre companies, Pilot Theatre, Slung Low and York Theatre Royal, are staging an epic journey through the streets of York as they present an ambitious and visually exciting promenade theatre production, Blood & Chocolate (3-20 October). The production tells the inspiring stories of workers and owners of York’s chocolate factories during the First World War alongside those of the young men involved in the conflict. Bringing the war-time chocolate history of York alive, audiences will follow the story through the city’s streets as well as listen in via headphones to the characters’ intimate conversations.

THROUGH THE KEYHOLE (14 – 20 October 2013)

Take a tour and see behind the scenes at the family home of Noel Goddard Terry, of York’s famous Terry’s of York chocolate firm.


Learn to taste the sweet stuff like a professional, watch chocolatiers at work in captivating chocolate-making demonstrations, taste some of their delicious creations and explore how chocolate is made from bean to bar. Tours and tastings throughout chocolate week at the city’s visitor attractions and chocolate shops. For example, join the Curator of History and one of the York Castle Museum’s costumed interpreters for a guided tour featuring the origins of chocolate in York. This is followed by a visit to some of York’s many chocolate shops (17 October). York’s CHOCOLATE Story will host a Choctail Masterclass. (18 October.)


Historians, archivists and curators across the city will explore everything from the origins of chocolate and the families that cemented York’s chocolate story in the history books, to how this most famous export continues to shape the City of York today.


Sit back at York’s City Screen cinema and watch film documentary Nothing life Chocolate delve deep into the rain forests of Grenada, where anarchist chocolatier Mott Green uses solar power, employee shareholding and small-scale antique equipment to turn out delicious chocolate.

Throughout Chocolate Week 2013 Visit York will be making sure that York’s seven million visitors are in no doubt that the city is truly Britain’s home of chocolate. Chocs Away for York’s Tempting Line-up of Attractions

• CHOCOLATE – York’s sweet story. A new visitor attraction that celebrates the mouth-watering story of chocolate and confectionery in York.

• Chocolate Trail. A chocolate themed walking trail with sweet treats at every turn.

• Rowntree Trail. Walk the history of Rowntree’s in the city.

• Chocolate Making Workshops. Visit York’s Cocoa House and Chocolate Heritage Tastings. Take your taste buds on a journey through history as you explore York.

• Chocolate Making Workshops. A range of practical courses from the city’s experts including chocolatier Sophie Jewett at York Cocoa House. Learn how to make your own chocolate to show off and share.

• City Screen Cinema. Screening of previously unseen chocolate film footage.

York Chocolate Festival 2014 York is also the venue for an annual Chocolate Festival taking place next spring - an indulgent celebration of the industry including the household name brands that were created in the city, from Chocolate Orange and Smarties to Aero and Kit Kat. The four day event focuses on the local artisan chocolate makers and skilled chocolatiers who fill York’s restaurants, shops and hotels with delectable cakes, pastries, chocolates and desserts. There will be a “chocolate market” showcasing local chocolate makers’ creations, and also chocolate tastings, workshops and specialist insights into the history, technology, product development and industry of confectionery in York. To indulge yourself visit, to book a special York Chocolate Break, or to find out more telephone Visit York Information Centre on 01904 550099 or email

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For further press information please contact:

Jo Willis – Public Relations Consultant Email: Tel: 07896 135205

Kay Hyde – Head of Communications – Visit York Direct Line: 01904 554451 Mobile: 07961 828092 Email:

About Visit York

• Visit York is supported by the City of York Council and over 700 tourism businesses and works in partnership with Visit England and Welcome to Yorkshire.

• Visit York’s aim is to market York as a must-see world-class destination to the leisure and business visitor, and ensure investment to develop the quality of tourism in York. Visit York is responsible for leisure and conference marketing, visitor services (running the city’s Visitor Information Centre), training and ensuring a quality visitor experience.

• Visit York is the driving force of the city’s tourism industry.

Key facts:

7.1 million visitors £443 million total visitor spend 23, 000 jobs

About Chocolate Week

Chocolate Week 2013 is a national chocolate celebration featuring tastings and events.