A Big Welcome.
This site is dedicated to the quest to find the historical trail of the 2 completely intact bottles of Caroni Navy Rum that turned up in a basement of a house in Manor Park, in East London, England in the 1980,s
Any information and stories relating to this Rum and of the Caroni / Tate & Lyle business would be very welcome.
My initial knowledge of Caroni Rum was zero and this is hopefully going to be a fascinating and educational journey
My thanks to Bob Davies - The Rumelier for inspiring me to action.
A brief overview:
The Rum was found in a house in Manor Park in the London borough of Newham in England in the late 1980s when we were clearing my grandparents house, which was also the house I was born in all those years ago.
We have had the Rum ever since and the rum was recently lucky not to have been involved in a fire which would have finished the story prematurely.
During the early 1990s I took the Rum to the Tate and Lyle refinery off of Silvertown Way, the Thames Wharf site where they had a small museum. The person in charge dated the bottles at early to middle 1940s and asked me if I would let them have the bottles for the museum. My response was, maybe, but they will be empty if I do. Yes we did laugh. He added that the Rum was given to the staff as a perk quite often.
I would like to be able to date the bottles with some authority because I think that is important to the history of the bottles. Depending upon when and if, they were from the early 1940s it would mean that there is a real chance that they would have survived the bombing of London during the Blitz, and of the sustained bombing of London and the docks between 7th September 1940 and 10th May 1941. And, or the sporadic bombing raids after the blitz leading to the ferocious attacks by the V1 and V2 flying bombs during 1944. There was a lot of damage around Manor Park and Silvertown during the raids.
Another reason to accurately date the Rum is that we could possibly work out which still at the CARONI DISTILLERY the Rum came from.
My first step now is to contact Tate & Lyle to see in more detail where there maybe solid information on the Caroni import operation and of the old Caroni distillery. Fingers Crossed.
Here are some items not directly linked to the quest but are related to the Rum
4 Original Coasters
An original typed letter relating to the promotion of the Caroni Rum
This leaflet has been emailed to me from Bristol Spirits after I asked them if they may have some useful information on Caroni. This leaflet is very useful as it gives information that once the rum is accurately dated it would seem possible to narrow down the still.
I have taken a couple of pictures of the tops of the bottles showing the stamping on the foil that may also help someone with the knowledge to date the bottles.
This is the top of the 75 proof bottle and reads
"UNITAL (TRINIDAD) Ltd. .LONDON."
This is the top of the 90 proof bottle and reads
"TATE & LYLE REFINERIES LIMITED"
I have been able to aquire an ashtay made for promotion of the Rum from the period that Caroni was a subsidiary of Tate & Lyle. If anybody out there knows anything regarding the ashtays please contact.
Makers stamp HANCOCK CORFIELD AND WALLER LTD
After a number of phone calls and emails to Tate & Lyle regarding the Rum history, to date I have not had any response. Never mind, I will get there in the end.
20/7/2010: The newest addition to the collection of related material is a steel promotional tray dating from the 1960's.