In the interests of balance (it may not last) between Kitchen and Garden, here’s a little snippet about Ruth Mott, ‘Aunty Ruth’ to some, the cook in the ‘Victorian Kitchen’ programmes.
Ruth’s last ‘proper’ cooking job, before coming out of retirement to take on ‘Victorian Kitchen’, was at Basildon Park for the Iliffe family. A few years ago, the National Trust, who now own Basildon, refurbished the 1950’s kitchen (the kitchen had not always been in that part of the house) to resemble how it would have looked in the time Ruth was there.
When the NT re-opened the kitchen to the public in June 2010, Ruth and her colleague from those days, Audrey Hearne, were on hand to help celebrate. Later, a couple of photos from the reopening were pinned up on the kitchen wall for visitors to see, and here’s one of them which I re-photographed.
For those who don’t know, Audrey is the one on the left as you look at the picture, and Ruth is on the right.