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BNPS.co.uk (01202 558833)<br />
Pic: Nestle/BNPS<br />
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A box from the late 1960s<br />
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A fascinating archive of vintage selection boxes have emerged to reveal how the common stocking filler was once a luxurious present that families would save all year for.<br />
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The assorted chocolate packs were launched by Rowntrees in the 1920s after the success of their Christmas hampers.<br />
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They were considered as extremely extravagant gifts with an early box from 1927 costing 10 shillings, the equivalent of one weeks rent for a poor, working class family.<br />
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The boxes contained some of the first chocolate bars invented by the company that are no longer in existance, including Nut Cracknel, Cream Tablette, and Motoring bars.<br />
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Families began putting aside money throughout the year to afford the must-have gifts, which became more extravagant as their popularity grew.<br />
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Rowntrees provided newsagents and grocery shops with special Christmas Club Cards which buyers used to pay weekly installments towards the selection boxes.<br />
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In the 1930s Rowntrees began adding novelty items to the packs such as vases, carriage clocks, and cutlery sets, which acted as keepsakes once the chocolate had been eaten.<br />
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They ranged in price from 2 shillings and six pence up to 10 shillings depending on the size of the enclosed gift.