Terry's of York is located in Clementhorpe, close to Middlethorpe in York, Yorkshire, next door to York's race course. It is also known as The Chocolate Works and boasts a 250-year history which has been flavoured by the Chocolate Orange and All Gold selection boxes. It closed on the 30th September 2005.
The Terry's company first started in 1767 as Robert Berry and Co, Berry's as it was known. William Bayldon and Robert Berry opened the shop close to Bootham Bar selling cough lozenges, lemon and orange candied peel and other sweets.
Joseph Terry, born in Pocklington in 1793, started work as an apprentice in apothecary in the Stonegate sector of York and went on to set up a shop as a chemist in Walmgate. It wasn't until 1823 that he met and married Harriet Atkinson who was Robert Berry's niece. William Bayldon left the company soon after and Joseph Terry stepped in to fill his shoes and giving up his apothecary.
Soon after Robert Berry died, his son stepped in and joined Joseph in a partnership, renaming the company Terry and Berry's. An advert in the Yorkshire Gazette dated October 29, 1825, stated: “Joseph Terry and George Berry, confectioners, St Helen’s Square, having taken the Stock and entered upon the premises of the late Robert Berry and Co, most respectfully solicit from the Friends of the late Firm and from the Public at large that Patronage so liberally bestowed on their Predecessors.”
This was not to last and as George Berry left the company leaving Joseph Terry with the business in 1828. He soon built up a good reputation with his cakes and comfits, sugared sweets, candied peel, marmalade and medicated lozenges. His former medical training, of how to 'sugar the pill' came in handy. He began to take advantage of York's superb railway system by sending quantities of his products to many towns around the North of England and into the Midlands and as far as London.
The Terry's name was becoming known around England but sadly Joseph Terry died in 1850 leaving his business to his sons. Three of his sons, Joseph, Robert and John carried the business on but it was Joseph Jnr who took it forward. He set up a new works at Clementhorpe by the River Ouse in 1862. The Ouse allowed a connection to the Humber estuary and the North Sea. Twice a week, the steam packet brought the sugar, cocoa, other ingredients and coal needed for the new steam-powered machinery at Joseph Terry & Sons. In 1867, one hundred years after the original company was set up, Terry's were selling over 400 products with 13 different kinds of chocolate. Joseph Jnr died in 1898.
It was in 1923 that Frank and Noel Terry joined the business and launched new products as well as moving the company to the present site, just off Bishopthorpe Road, to a purpose built factory known as The Chocolate Works in 1926. The chocolate apple was produced here with the chocolate orange launched in 1931 with Terry's All Gold. The chocolate orange was much more popular than the apple which caused it sadly to be phased out in 1954.
World War II halted the production of confectionary when F Hill's and Son's from Manchester moved into the factory, to manufacturer and repair aircraft propeller blades. After the war the factory was handed back and confectionary manufacture was resumed.
In 1975, Terry's of York was acquired by United Biscuits who promoted the Terry's products with a number of advertising campaigns as well as adding more selections to Terry's All Gold.
In 1993, Kraft General Foods bought the Terry's Group from United Biscuits and amalgamated it with Jacobs Suchard to create Terry's Suchard. They introduced a few changes in the All Gold line up, with 'milk and mint' versions. All Gold White Limited Edition was introduced in 2000.
In 2004 Kraft announced the closure of the York Chocolate Works and on September 30, 2005, the factory closed its doors with the loss of over 300 jobs - production moved to Europe.