To view this media, you will require Adobe Flash 9 or higher and must have Javascript enabled.

Duration 35.15

Selling history: the role of the past at Fortnum and Mason

Founded in the year when Great Britain was created, the history of Fortnum and Mason is that of the development of British taste. It covers tea drinking, picnics, mail order, climbing Everest and knickerbocker glories. It is a history of change, and of constants. In 2012, the stories from its past are important communication and marketing tools in the battle to ensure sustainability and growth.

Dr Andrea Tanner was a professional genealogist at the College of Arms for many years before undertaking academic research into poverty and sickness in London. She founded the Historic Hospitals Records Admissions Project, based at Kingston University, is Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Historical Research, assistant archivist at Great Ormond Street Hospital and keeper of the company memory at Fortnum and Mason. She is most proud of having been the founding secretary of the Friends of the Public Record Office (now Friends of The National Archives).


  1. Frank Bouchier-Hayes says:

    A most interesting podcast. I wonder is there any reference as to when Dickens first began to associate himself with the shop? I was saddened to hear of the Luftwaffe destruction of so many precious records. Finally, let me say that I greatly enjoyed my 2012 visit to the shop and hope to return again later this year.

  2. Angela Fortnum says:

    I Live near Epwell, Oxfordshire and there is no reference on the village website to there being a connection with F&M. I would be interested to learn:
    1) where the Epwell connection came from
    2) where did Charles’ family originate?
    3) when and where William was born
    4) why his family went to London
    5) when and who did William marry?

    I do not know whether there is any connection to my family and so it is of interest to me to find out about William’s ancestors.

    I hope you can supply some answers please.

  3. Yuko Matsuzaki says:

    I did enjoy the talk about Fortnum & Mason by Dr Andrea Tanner. Very charming talk, isn’t it?

    By the way, I made a great mistake regarding voting. I intended to place five stars but I clicked only one star. I did not mean it and would like to cancel my voting but I cannot. So sorry for this.

    1. Ruth Ford (admin) says:

      Thank you very much for your comment Yuko – we have deleted your rating.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

We will not be able to respond to personal family history research questions on this platform.
See our moderation policy for more details.