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Our days of joyful lunacy with the hippy capitalist Nicholas Saunders | Letters Specific Instances

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It introduced me nice pleasure to learn the characteristic about Nicholas Saunders (Hippy, capitalist, guru, grocer: the forgotten genius who modified British meals, 23 January). I encountered this exceptional man throughout my scholar trip in 1976 when he employed me and a few younger associates to transform this wonderful derelict banana warehouse into the wholefoods store. It was an unbelievable expertise (I bear in mind an armour producer subsequent door).

Nick was such a visionary – he should have been one of many first individuals to see the potential of the outdated Covent Backyard, and to decide to the rejuvenation of the not too long ago vacated fruit and veg market. Visiting Neal’s Yard now fills me with nice pleasure and in addition with nice recollections of that summer season and of working for Nick.
Nick Murphy
East Bridgford, Nottinghamshire

Jonathan Nunn’s piece on the anarchic however principled hippy capitalist Nicholas Saunders introduced again the joyful lunacy of the late 60s and early 70s, after I helped to analysis the fourth version of Different London and its successor, Different England & Wales. The downsides had been incidental. The geese that dived beneath the window separating home from backyard at his World’s Finish residence naturally shat everywhere in the cushions on which we reclined inside his papier-mache cave.
Jennifer Potter
London

Earlier than Saunders produced Different London, I had a small, tatty, booklet referred to as Undertaking Free London, which gave you all of the stuff you wanted to know to reside cheaply within the metropolis – from which eating places and outlets disposed of undesirable however nonetheless recent meals late at evening, to the way to journey free on the underground. It additionally had helpful data equivalent to the house phone numbers of cupboard ministers and different notables.

I don’t know who produced or initially printed it, however I do know the way it was distributed, because it mentioned on the quilt: “Don’t purchase this e book, if any person prices you for it they’re ripping you off”, or phrases to that impact. I used to be given mine by a buddy.
Graham Mullan
Bristol

One of many pleasures of utilizing Neal’s Yard Desktop Publishing Studio within the Nineteen Eighties was the common arrival of teams of businessmen (usually in threes, for some cause). Their try and pitch a enterprise proposal to Saunders can be met with a chilly stare and a curt: “We don’t play the enterprise sport.” As to his function within the meals revolution, the final time I noticed him was within the Strand, the place he was gobbling down a KFC…
Bevan Jones
London

One other issue for change in British meals was the bakery strikes of the 70s, which utterly reworked the nation’s bread. The market had been dominated by two giant corporations and all that was usually out there was white cotton-wool-like bread – and some Hovis loaves for a distinct segment market. Throughout the strikes individuals needed to begin baking their very own and found what bread ought to style like. Who may then have imagined that at some point individuals can be shopping for bread-making machines?
Deirdre Sutton
Evesham, Worcestershire

Your article says that Saunders “even went to the island of Paros to grill farmers”. I hope that earlier than doing so he marinated them in a single day in Greek yoghurt.
Peter Dewar
Bromley, London

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