Queen Elizabeth II despatched a tier of her wedding ceremony cake to Australia in 1947. Who ate it?


For individuals nonetheless reeling from the ravages of World Conflict II, who hadn’t seen an iced cake in years, it was the stuff of goals.

The four-tier wedding ceremony cake of Princess Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten stood 2.7 metres excessive, weighed 220 kilograms and was adorned with ornate scenes from the long run Queen’s life.

After Prince Philip reduce the alcohol-laced fruitcake together with his sword, a whole layer was despatched to Australia.

However what occurred to it subsequent?

May an opulent slice of historical past be in a Tupperware container, nonetheless stashed away behind somebody’s freezer?

To search out the reply, we’ve to return to the start, and why Australia was gifted the cake within the first place.

The ending touches are placed on Queen Elizabeth II’s towering wedding ceremony cake.(Provided)

The ‘10,000-mile cake’

When the November 20, 1947 wedding ceremony came about, extreme meals rationing was nonetheless in place in Britain.

The substances for the towering masterpiece had been despatched from throughout the British Empire — incomes it the “10,000-mile cake” nickname.

It had butter from New Zealand, flour from Canada, rum from Jamaica, sugar from Barbados, a bit brandy from South Africa.

The Australian Woman Guides, who counted Elizabeth as an energetic member, additionally chipped in.

Girl Guides with the ingredients for the Queen's wedding cake
Woman Guides with the substances for the Queen’s wedding ceremony cake.(Provided: Woman Guides Australia)

They supplied the dried fruit for the cake — together with near 30kg of sultanas, 6kg of currants and 5kg of crystallised cherries.

All up, they shipped seven crates of produce on August 13, 1947. The stockpile was delivered to the cake’s bakers, McVitie and Worth, in England.

After the marriage, during which two former Guides served as bridesmaids, the pleased couple despatched a tier again to Australia as a method of claiming thanks.

It was divvied up between Woman Guides branches in every state.

Who obtained part of the cake?

It is a wistful and tempting thought to think about that it is nonetheless on the market someplace, however the reality is a bit more grounded in actuality: it was eaten.

In Victoria, it was savoured by Guides within the Extension Department — for ladies with a incapacity, of which there have been many as a consequence of polio epidemics earlier than and in the course of the struggle.

It was despatched there partially as a result of the group was sufficiently small that everybody may have a style.

“It has been determined to current the cake to the Extension Department, the place the variety of Guides will most likely permit every member to pattern it,” reads a 1948 article within the Guides’ Matilda journal.

“I’m certain we will all get pleasure from it in spirit with them.”

A Sydney Morning Herald article from February 5, 1948, that talks about the royal wedding cake.
The CWA’s supplementary cake obtained a point out within the Sydney Morning Herald on February 5, 1948.(Trove)

Allow them to have truffles

The Woman Guides weren’t the one Australian group to zero in on the marriage cake when pondering of a present for the royal couple.

The Nation Girls’s Affiliation had the “distinctive honour” of sending a completed cake, made with fruit provided by the RSL’s Renmark department.

Their “supplementary” cake — one in all round a dozen to seem on the wedding ceremony — was made in Sydney by the top chef at David Jones.

Every of its six tiers carried the title of an Australian state, and there was additionally different symbolism at play.

“The cake, which comprises the Australian coat-of-arms on every of its 4 sides, is superbly adorned with sprigs of silver bracken fern, wedding ceremony bells and a twig of white flowers in a silver vase on high,” The Land newspaper reported in 1974.

A bit of wedding ceremony cake was additionally despatched to the Abroad League in New South Wales, the place it went on show and was touched by many members “for luck”, the Sydney Morning Herald revealed.



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