the bottom drawer

recollections, photos and memorabilia of Leyton and Leytonstone

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History of Leyton

High Road, Leyton

near the Bakers’ Arms

The restaurants were opened between 08.00 - 16.00 and were staffed by salaried workers and supported by volunteers.

Specimen menus consisted of:

Savoury Mince Pie
Cabbage, Haricots with Baked or Mashed Potatoes
Steamed Syrup Roll

Roast Pork
Cabbage, Haricots with Baked or Mashed Potatoes
Rice and Prunes

Stewed Steak & Dumplings
Cabbage, Carrots & Mashed Potatoes
Sultana Rice

Savoury Ham & Mince Pud
Cabbage, Haricot Beans & Mashed Potatoes
Rice Milk Pud or Jam Tart

Meat and two veg cost a shilling, kiddies under fifteen 6d.  Sweets were 3d and tea or coffee 2d per cup.


No mention of the old British favourites of Brown Windsor Soup or Spotted Dick.  Perhaps this did not prevent someone saying they wanted Spotted Dick, “well don’t we all dear!”





David Ian Chapman   

Two British Restaurants opened in Leyton, the first in the modern Electric Showrooms in the High Road, close to the Baker’s Arms (recent photo above), and next door to the Swimming Baths.  This opened March 1942 and had seating for 250 and served 1500 main meals per week.  A second branch opened in Lea Bridge Road in August 1943, slightly larger with seating for 300 and serving some 2000 meals a week.  This served the factories on Argall Estate involved in the war effort.


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