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Flour scoops

Flour scoop
Where is it from? Guildford and Shamley Green
When was it made? About 1900
How was it made? White scoop - stamped, folded and enamelled. Wooden handle scoop - folded and rivetted.
What was it made from? Metal, enamel and wood
Size: White scoop - L 343mm W 121mm. Wood-handled scoop L 267mm W 203mm
Museum number: LG.1357, LG.2912

These scoops were both for measuring out flour. The white one was used at Gwinn's Bakery and Grocery in Chapel Street, Guildford. The other was used at Lord's Hill Stores in Shamley Green. These were both independent businesses that closed in the late 20th century. The Gwinn family ran their shop on the same premises from 1832 until 1986. One of the bakers had an interesting side-line on a Sunday.

Flour is the main ingredient of bread, which has been a staple food for people in many parts of the world for thousands of years. It was known in Ancient Egypt and in Greece in the 5th century BCE. Before the 19th century, bread often had other things added such as chalk and sawdust. Laws were passed to stop this in Britain.

Early in the 20th century, some local people gave their Sunday lunches to one of the Gwinns before going to the chapel service. He put them in his oven for baking and then went to the service himself, still wearing his apron. Afterwards, everyone came to collect their hot lunches from him.

James Gwinn owned our Home Guard helmet.