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Town of Kendal

Updated on May 19, 2010

Relive the pleasures of chocolate!

In the district of Cumbria is the charming little town of Kendal. Since my name is also Kendall I made sure it was a stop on my trek through England. Cumbria is also known as the Lake District which is known as the home to many English writers, mainly Beatrix Potter and William Wordsworth. Kendal possesses all the charms of small towns: cobbletsone streets, welcoming townspeople, and little shops on the main street. My favorite was the 1657 Chocolate shop. It actually has been open since 1657! They have an entire list of different hot chocolates named for different historical figures. There's even one called King's Delight, which is named for Nell Gwynne, a mistress of King Charles II, who was an orange seller! So the King's Delight hot chocolate had a lovely hint of tangerine! Yum! (King Charles II was the English king who lost his head due to the Civil War which was won by the Roundheads under Charles Cromwell.) The 1657 Chocolate House was originally a bakery, but later became a chocolatery house. The waitresses still dress in traditional dress of the 1650s. Though I should warn everyone the building has not changed much so due to the lack of stature in the 1650s the ceilings are quite low. I'm five feet tall and even I had to duck!

1657 Chocolate House

King's Delight hot chocolate
King's Delight hot chocolate
Nell Gwynne
Nell Gwynne
low ceilings of the Chocolate house
low ceilings of the Chocolate house

Kendal and it's Mint Cakes

Kendal is the main seat of Kendal and the South Lakes in the shire of Cumbria. Though it is not in the Lake District it is referred to as the 'gateway to the Lake District.' Kendal, often referred to as Auld Grey Town. The town is most well known for their Kendal mint cake. First discovered in 1869 by Joseph Wiper, the Kendal mint cake is a sugar bar that mainly climbers, mountaineers,and outdoorsmen use for it's high energy content. The main ingredients are sugar, glucose, water, and peppermint oil. You can typically find three types of mint cake, whiter sugar, brown sugar, or covered in chocolate. Today there are three companies in Kendal still producing mint cakes, Romney's, Wilson's and Quiggin's.

Some interesting facts about Kendal Mint Cakes

1) Sir Edmund Hillary carried Kendal mint cakes on his successful trek to Mount Everest

2)On the Trans-Atlantic expedition of 1914-1917 all men carried mint cake in their supplies

3)Kendal mint cake is a standard part of a 24-hour ration pack for the Irish Defense sources

Conclusion

So to finish on what a charming town, Kendal is worth the visit to Cumbria. Next on the list should be the Lake District which is known as a quiet retreat from the world for writers and others looking to enjoy nature in the north. Be on the look out for that hub coming soon!

Kendall in Kendal

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    • lmmartin profile image

      lmmartin 7 years ago from Alberta and Florida

      Well, if one is to share a name with a town, how fortunate your namesake is such an interesting and charming place. Thank you for sharing your visit there. Is it my imagination, or did our tour focus entirely on sweet things to eat? Lynda

    • europewalker profile image

      europewalker 7 years ago

      Love the picture of The Famous Chocolate House. I want to go there. What a lovely hub Kendall.

    • Kendall H. profile image
      Author

      Kendall H. 7 years ago from Northern CA

      Hi Lynda! I must admit it was a sweet trip :) I didn't stop at any of the mint cake factories. Mainly it was the chocolate house and then walking around the town and then going on to Hadrian's wall. But I thought Hadrian's wall and the Lake District were great topics for later hubs. It was a lot of fun just to say Kendall in Kendal. Thanks for reading!

    • Kendall H. profile image
      Author

      Kendall H. 7 years ago from Northern CA

      Thanks for reading europewalker! I hope you get there someday! You'll love the Chocolate House!

    • Jane Grey profile image

      Ann Leavitt 7 years ago from Oregon

      What an idyllic little town! I love that it's named after you. ;) Your photos were delightful. I think I want to sketch the 1657 Chocolate house and then go to Kendal to write a novel! How long were you there for? You mentioned that it was in the Lake District. Is Kendal the main town in the Lake District, or is it fairly small? Just curious.

      Thanks so much for this lovely tour! I enjoyed my "holiday" with you. :)

    • Kendall H. profile image
      Author

      Kendall H. 7 years ago from Northern CA

      Thanks Jane! It would be a wonderful place to write a novel! Find a little cottage and stop in daily for your hot chocolate. An ideal routine! Kendal is in the shire of Cumbria but reading further they call Kendal the gateway to the Lake District. So it is one of the larger towns in the shire and the Lake District is just a matter of minutes away. There is plenty to do in Kendal, the day after I left they were beginning a week long celebration to Robin Hood. (Could this place get any better?!) Glad you enjoyed the tour!

    • Sufidreamer profile image

      Sufidreamer 7 years ago from Sparti, Greece

      It's all your fault - I liked the Hub but the picture caused me to devour my last precious bar of Wilson's Kendal Mint cake. Going to have to persuade my family to send me some more.

      Enjoyed the Hub - I love Kendal very much :)

    • Kendall H. profile image
      Author

      Kendall H. 7 years ago from Northern CA

      Hi Sufidreamer! Glad you enjoyed the hub! Kendal is a great town to visit. I'd go back in a heartbeat. Thanks for reading and commenting!

      P.S. Hope your family expedites some Kendal Mint Cakes to you soon!

    • ejazahmed2609 profile image

      ejazahmed2609 6 years ago from Abu Dahbi, UAE

      very beautiful hub. though I have not seen the beautiful scenes but you have illustrates in an excellent way. thanks for sharing.

    • Kendall H. profile image
      Author

      Kendall H. 5 years ago from Northern CA

      Thank you ejazahmed2609!

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