George Romney Ltd is a fourth-generation confectionery business located in the market town of Kendal, on the edge of the Lake District National Park. Founded by Mr. Sam T. Clarke in 1918, the company has a rich history rooted in the tradition of Kendal Mint Cake making.
The Origin of Kendal Mint Cake
The origins of Kendal Mint Cake can be traced back to Joseph Wiper, who produced the first batch of Kendal Mint Cake by mistake in 1869. Wiper's continued to produce Mint Cake until 1987 when the company was bought by George Romney Ltd, who still make Mint Cake using the original recipe to this day.
Kendal Mint Cake rose to popularity in the early 20th century as an energy source that could withstand extreme conditions. Kendal Mint Cake was a staple of many early expeditions, including the first-ever land crossing of the Antarctic led by Sir Ernest Shackleton between 1914-1917.
The Ascent to Fame: The First Successful Summit of Mount Everest
In 1953, George Romney Ltd received a request from a member of the British Mount Everest Expedition, who had seen an advert for their Mint Cake in a climbing magazine. The Expedition requested that 38lbs of Mint Cake be taken with them as part of their high altitude rations, which was approved by the Ministry of Foods.
At 11.30 am on May 29th, 1953, Sir Edmund Hillary and Sirdar Tenzing from the British Mount Everest Expedition finally reached the summit of Mount Everest and became the first people ever to conquer the Earth's highest mountain. According to a member of the team, Romney's Kendal Mint Cake was "easily the most popular item in our high altitude ration packs – our only criticism is that we did not have enough of it."
From that day forward, Romney's Kendal Mint Cake became a firm favourite among adventurers worldwide.
The Romney Legacy: From Wartime Confectionery to a World-Renowned Brand
Today, George Romney Ltd employs 19 members of full and part-time staff and produces over 100 tonnes of Romney's Kendal Mint Cake per year, along with a range of fudge, gift hampers, and their very own Old Fashioned Treacle Toffee, made to an original family recipe. All production takes place at Mintsfeet Industrial Estate in Kendal, where the company has been located since 1969.
The company's legacy continues to thrive, as evidenced by its association with some of the greatest adventures in human history and its commitment to producing confectionery products of the highest quality. With a rich history that spans over a century, George Romney Ltd is a testament to the art of confectionery craftsmanship and a true symbol of adventure.