On Thursday 7th December we were treated to a Victorian Christmas at Bridge Cottage. Our Heritage Education officers Maria & Nicola gave us a talk about Victorian Christmas customs including the origins of Christmas cards, crackers, Boxing Day and the foods and drinks served.
Here pictured below is ‘Flip’, a mixed drink Maria made with eggs, ale, brandy and sugar then heated using a hot poker from our open fire. Flipped drinks originated in the late 17th century but were still popular during Victorian times. Charles Dickens mentions flip in several novels including Bleak House and Great Expectations.
Some in attendance were brave enough to taste the mixture and reported that is was quite distinct! We were also treated to a poor mans type gingerbread, called Gingerbread nuts, made from flour, treacle and ginger.
Here is an extract from the diary of Mr St.John Smith, a later resident and business man in Uckfield, from December 1875. We heard an insight into local Victorian life. This diary is part of our Uckfield and District Preservation Society Archive collection.
We have launched our programme of talks for Jan-July 2018. Please see our website for further details: http://www.bridgecottageuckfield.co.uk/evening-talks/