Historic Cheeses: Leicestershire, Stilton & Stichelton - Trevor HickmanBreedon Books Publishing, 2009, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good+ — in Very Good+ Dust Wrapper.
Illustrated by way of: Black & White Photographs; Facsimiles; Black & White Drawings; Maps;
From the cover: “When Trevor Hickman published the first history of Stilton cheese in 1995, he had spent over 30 years researching the manufacture of the ‘King of English Cheeses’. He has encountered much opposition from local politicians and cheese makers. They argued that Stilton cheese was never made in the village of Stilton in Huntingdonshire on the Roman road called Ermine Street, but was instead made around the district of Melton Mowbray. In this book the author has attempted to correct this. A blue-veined, pressed cream cheese was made in the town of Stilton by 1721, and it was called Stilton cheese.
A different type of cream cheese which developed blue veins was produced in the farm dairies in the village of Wymondham, Leicestershire, before 1600, and was marketed in the name of the producers. Frances Pawlett of Wymondham and Cooper Thornhill, an entrepreneur living in Stilton and trading into London, changed the manufacture and marketing of this world-famous cheese. Another influential individual, Shuckburgh Ashby, an entrepreneur with connections with the banking community in London, began dealing with Leicestershire cheese from Hinckley, Leicester and eventually Quenby Hall. This pressed cheese developed in the Sparkenhoe Hundred in Leicestershire, off the Roman roads known as the Fosse Way and Wading Street. The marketing of the pressed wheels of Leicestershire cheese brought many competitors. In the 1740s Ashby became aware of a new cheese that was being marketed in London, Stilton cheese, which was sold out of Cornhill, London, by Cooper Thornhill. After Thornhill’s death, Ashby controlled much of the Stilton cheese trade into London, which was by then being made at Quenby Hall.
The production of cheese in Leicestershire and the Midlands has developed and expanded over many centuries. In the 20th century cheese production came under the control of national Government, which stipulated that all blue-veined cream cheese must be produced from pasteurised milk. There was considerable opposition to these controls and protests surfaced again in 1989 when the Minister of Agriculture intended to ban the sale of unpasteurised cheese. The Specialist Cheesemakers’ Association was formed in opposition, with Randolph Hodgson as chairman. Nowadays a fine Leicestershire cheese is made near Hinckley and Stichelton cheese is made in Nottinghamshire from the original Stilton cheese recipe. Both are made from organic, unpasteurised milk.”