Authors Duncan Barrett, Nuala Calvi and Kate Thompson in conversation about two of the East End’s most iconic and best loved firms.
During the 20th century, Tate & Lyle sugar manufacturers at Silvertown and Yardley’s cosmetics in Stratford were more than just big employees of local women. They were a rite of passage, a community and a calling, offering girls a formidable education in the ways of the world.
The vibrant stories of the young women who worked there, as told through Duncan’s and Nuala’s book, The Sugar Girls, and Kate’s novel, Secrets of the Homefront Girls, evoke a fascinating slice of East End social history.
The firms may be long gone, but some of the women remain and their heart-warming stories shine a light on the richness, complexity and camaraderie of the streets they called home.
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