Sarah Nelson's Grasmere Gingerbread

Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread

Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread:

Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread shop is next to the churchyard and you will definitely smell it before you see it.

This tiny Bakehouse and shop was formally the village schoolhouse where Wordsworth taught for a time in 1882.

Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread

Gingerbread has been made on these premises since the mid-nineteenth century and the recipe (of Sarah Nelson) is still a closely guarded secret.

As a result, gingerbread is still freshly baked daily to the original recipe and is the only source of the celebrated Grasmere Gingerbread.

The firm produces 2.5 million pieces of gingerbread each year and employs 17 full-time and six part-time roles.

Part sticky cake, part crumbly biscuit Sarah’s unique recipe has stood the passage of time.

Consequently, she kept the recipe in a bank vault before passing it on to her niece.

The shop is no longer in the family, but the recipe has been passed down through the generations and gingerbread is still sold today.

More recently, Sarah Nelson’s shop hit the national headlines over the application to trademark the name of ‘Grasmere Gingerbread’.

The current owners of Sarah Nelson’s have alleged that only their gingerbread has a real right to use the term, a claim hotly disputed by other local businesses.

They believe that the recipe dates back to at least the mid-18th century, when spices, rum, and sugar first arrived at the Cumbria ports. They conclude that traditional gingerbread existed long before Sarah Nelson cooked up her first batch.

As a consequence of the gingerbread’s fame, celebrities travel here to taste it and brides use it for wedding favours. 

The TV chef – Jamie Oliver, among others, swears it is the best gingerbread he has ever tasted.

Due to the coronavirus, the ‘famous green door’ has closed for the first time in its 166 years in business.

The closure followed government guidelines at the time, but business continued as orders could be placed online.

Fortunes for the business improved significantly in June 2023, as Grasmere Gingerbread opened its second Lake District store.

Sarah Nelson's Grasmere Gingerbread

After having the same Grasmere shop for 169 years a new store is set to open in Hawkshead at Corner shop on Main Street.

The shop is a grade II listed building which is larger than the original shop in Grasmere.

Sarah Nelson's Grasmere Gingerbread

The shop is open to the public seven days a week from 10am until 4.30 pm.

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