Latest news from Berwick Probus Club

The meat pie is popular with all classes, but that was not the case 500 years ago when only noblemen with the rank of Baron and above could eat them.

Friday, 8th April 2016, 8:00 am

Rancid meat was delivered to the lepers.

Margaret Skea, guest speaker at Berwick Probus Club on Wednesday, gave a very interesting talk on Food and Food Standards of the 16th Century.

She explained that it was the Government’s role to see that the population did not starve, but strict regulations and a series of statutes affected those making and selling food and drink.

Offenders could be fined or ordered to the pillory, and those who persisted faced the threat of death.

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There were sumptuary laws, which covered children and the elderly, and state statutes for customers and sellers, as well as instructions on when, what and where they could buy their provisions – almost always from a market and at a fixed price.

Both cost and quality were regulated and Scotland had seven acts passed which affected the important aspect of weights and measures.

Diseased animals were a major problem which had to be faced, and in England all meat had to be sold by weight.

Before the meeting, vice chairman Harry Wilson congratulated club chairman Robert Crozier and presented him with a card and gift. Rob was celebrating his 90th birthday.