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  • Writer's pictureLetters Wander

POW... None Better!

Parkinsons’ pills, manufactured in Burnley, were once known throughout the land.⠀

The company claimed that it sold more pills than any other business in the world, with millions being produced annually.⠀

It was also the first chemist anywhere to coat tablets with sugar to make them more palatable.⠀

Parkinsons’ range of products included ‘female pills’, ‘blood and stomach pills’, soda mint tablets, and... er... baking powder? ⠀

Baking powder wasn’t always found in the pre-bun aisle of the supermarket... if you wanted your cakes to rise without yeast... once upon a time, you headed to the chemist. ⠀

Baking powder was first manufactured by chemist Alfred Bird (yes, the custard guy). His chemical creation solved a need to make bread without yeast for his wife, Elizabeth, who struggled with allergies. His discovery went on to provide a quick rising solution for the military, the impoverished and later, televised, tented cooking competitions.⠀

Bird did not patent his discovery however, which lead to a glut of pill makers and chemists seizing an opportunity. They ramped up powder production... and painted huge advertisements, like this one by Parkinsons’ of Burnley, on sides of buildings throughout towns to peddle their wares. ⠀

On your walls… get paint…. Bake!

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