A Blue Bird Toffee tin from our vintage toffee tin collection.

This month’s featured toffee tin from our vintage toffee tin collection was issued during the 1930’s by the Blue Bird toffee factory in England.

The Blue Bird of Happiness – the play by Belgian playwright Maurice Maeterlinck - was the inspiration behind British confectioner Harry Vincent’s decision to change the name of his confectionery brand from “Harvino” to “Blue Bird.” This was at the time he decided to move his factory in Birmingham which he had started in 1898 to grounds in the countryside about 17 km away, near a small town called Romsley. With this splendid new factory, situated on a large piece of land and surrounded by beautiful sprawling gardens, Vincent realized his dream of building a production facility that would not only be of showcase architectural splendour, but would also offer a delightful working environment for his staff. This idea was shared by other major confectionery brands in England at the time; Cadbury, who built an awe-inspiring factory on sprawling green fields not far from Bourneville, and Fry’s Chocolate, who had their factory near Bristol.

The Blue Bird factory near Romsley.

Blue Bird issued a vast array of exquisite toffee tins, the most recent example of which was issued in 1995 to commemorate their centenary. The lid featured a picture of the original factory. During the 1950’s the brand issued an average of about twenty tins of different designs each year. They covered many themes such as “Hyde Park,” “Ludlow Castle” and “Sorrento.” Christmas designs often featured Santa bringing gifts to a sleeping child. A children’s range of tins included designs with merry-go-rounds, children or animals dancing around the tin and holiday scenes to name only a few. Most tins also bore their famous slogan, “Take home sweet home.”

The tin we are looking at here depicts Richmond Castle, which is a national monument today. The large size of the tin is due to its function as part of a shop display counter and contained toffees you could buy by weight.

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