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Teddy Gray’s Sweet Factory

Apr 26, 2013

by Alison Feldmann

Established in 1826, Teddy Gray’s Confectionery has been a family-owned and run business from the very start. Passed down through five generations — with three generations working under the same roof, even today — this small British factory looks much like it must have one hundred years ago, filled with oversize copper boilers, candy twisted by hand, and nary a computer in sight. Though modernization looms outside its doors, this family business is committed to keeping traditional, hand-made methods of sweet-making alive.

114 comments

  • skyvalleyjewelry

    Jennifer from skyvalleyjewelry said 4 years ago

    Fantastic video !!!!! I love how they have stayed to the old ways, it really says something.

  • MegansMenagerie

    Megan from MegansMenagerie said 4 years ago

    What an amazing story!

  • smroberds

    Shannon C. from AirplanesToZebras said 4 years ago

    Nothing is better than family owned businesses staying true to their roots. Love that they keep old world traditions going even in our modern society.

  • gboliver

    Gail Oliver from AttentionGetting said 4 years ago

    A business that is almost 200 years old, that's amazing!

  • ThreeBarDGifts

    Monica from ThreeBarDGifts said 4 years ago

    Amazing! I really enjoyed this tour of the candy factory! I'm so impressed at their commitment to keeping the old methods of candy-making alive!

  • leonidavidson

    Leoni Davidson from FromLeoniWithLove said 4 years ago

    What a great video! So interesting how they put the letters in the rock!

  • speltbaker

    speltbaker said 4 years ago

    IS ANYONE GOING TO DUDLEY?? i'd be happy to send along an order! In fact, it's kind of cruel to watch this and realize there is no possible way to get them outside of the UK

  • FreakyPeas

    FreakyPeas from FreakyPeas said 4 years ago

    that is so sweet!

  • Drifva

    Drifva from Drifva said 4 years ago

    Fantastic people and what a great working-environment! Such a beautiful product - handmade sweets are something else! And also a good example of how much elbowgrease is needed too in manufacturing, we sometimes forget when we whistfully glance at the industrial era. Very educational, and inspirational...

  • untamedrose

    Breanna from untamedrose said 4 years ago

    Seriously they need to start shipping internationally :D

  • TopStitchDesign

    Anna from TopStitchDesign said 4 years ago

    Wow! I would love to work in that factory! Might need false teeth by the time I'm 40 though! It is very interesting how younger generations also enjoy doing what the family started.

  • CoralHome

    Elizabeth Veres from CoralHome said 4 years ago

    Amazing!! I love that there are still family-owned businesses out there. Wish there are more businesses like this! I am pregnant, so the video made me CRAVE sweets!!! So inspirational!

  • LivingVintage

    LivingVintage from LivingVintage said 4 years ago

    Amazing!

  • NirvanaRoad

    Lisa from NirvanaRoad said 4 years ago

    I would love to try some! Great video.

  • OuterKnits

    OuterKnits from OuterKnits said 4 years ago

    Charming! But, a quick Google check revealed they had a recall on several items last month for possible rodent infestation.

  • muesserbozkurt

    müesser bozkurt from Istanbulcolors said 4 years ago

    it is amazing, and very lovely..

  • recycledwares

    Nerrissa W from RecycledWares said 4 years ago

    wonderful video. Thanks for sharing

  • SquidWhaleDesigns

    Elizabeth McTear from HonestAlchemyCo said 4 years ago

    I think my favorite detail of all of this is the sexy/hunky calendars hung in their offices.

  • TheLittleRagamuffin

    Jenny from TheLittleRagamuffin said 4 years ago

    Thank you so much for sharing this video. A peek into another time...

  • ikabags

    IKA PARIS from ikabags said 4 years ago

    Formidable ! merci Alison :)

  • NurseSarah78

    Sarah Mapes from NurseSarah78 said 4 years ago

    I checked out their website and was really impressed until I saw the huge list of products that have been recalled.

  • JenniferDannielle

    Jennifer Fraunfelder from SouthernBabiesEtsy said 4 years ago

    nice article. but when you go to their website there is a link/tab for product recall due to rodent infestation. yikes.

  • UnderMilkWood

    UnderMilkWood from UnderMilkWood said 4 years ago

    Wow lovely story, I used to live near a sweet factory and it used to smell like pear drops all the time!

  • BoBoChild

    BoBoChild from BoBoChild said 4 years ago

    Brilliant! Keep it pure & simple & from the heart.

  • SilverFoxDesigns6

    SilverFoxDesigns6 from SilverFoxDesigns6 said 4 years ago

    The video brought back the memory of the taste of a stick of rock. I wish we had a sweet shop like that here. They really deserve the feature.

  • hammeritout

    Megan Russell from hammeritout said 4 years ago

    Thank you for telling us about this adorable business. It makes me happy to know that it exists!

  • ABlindCat

    ABlindCat from ABlindCat said 4 years ago

    That is very cool. Quite inspiring. Great video post as well.

  • H88255

    H88255 from HillarysSuperfoods said 4 years ago

    Lovely story and business!

  • losethecurse

    Sara from HiraganaAmericana said 4 years ago

    Brilliant video. These fine folks are preserving a way of business while producing quality products made with care. It is now on my bucket list to cut fresh candy with giant scissors.

  • zoeyclark

    Zoey Clark from zoeyclark said 4 years ago

    i <3 Martin Parr! Thanks for sharing!

  • rhondastubbs2

    Rhonda Stubbs from RhondaCorner said 4 years ago

    Great story. It's nice to see and hear that there's still old world out there teaching the young. Modern is not always the best. It seem to be very family oriented. Thanks for the story and I am glad that it was featured.

  • leahleaf

    Leah Moses from Yumyo said 4 years ago

    what a fantastic video! the Grays seem as sweet as their candy. Huge smile on my face start to finish.

  • glendalee

    glenda puhek from glendalee said 4 years ago

    Hope this goes on and on and on…

  • JannieWeigel

    Jannie Weigel from Craftobiography said 4 years ago

    This is such a lovely story and so inspiring video! What an amazing place to work! And how they do their job, and talk about it. Really, feels way more than just a day job... All this makes you wanna go and order some (and lots!) of their goods right away :))

  • beebracelet

    beebracelet from thebeeteam said 4 years ago

    The bee team promises to never gobble candy again. From this day forward, all candy will be consumed mindfully in honor of Teddy Gray's Sweet Factory.

  • BeadLady74

    Amy Spock from BeadsandThreadsbyAmy said 4 years ago

    Incredible story! Best wishes to them...

  • nativestrandsjewelry

    Rachel from PeppersJewelry said 4 years ago

    Interesting video. I enjoyed seeing the product being made. Thanks!

  • jenniferbranch4

    Jennifer Branch from Guineverecollection said 4 years ago

    Love the accent! Recalled items so they might want to clean up a bit lol

  • rabiaumer1

    Rabia Umer from Fashionpalte said 4 years ago

    Amazing story

  • beadstylin

    beadstylin from beadstylin said 4 years ago

    Fascinating! But now I want to try their candy!

  • Oldylocks

    Miranda Schubert from Oldylocks said 4 years ago

    love this!

  • exitera

    Hristo Hvoynev from ExiArtsConceptWorlds said 4 years ago

    Yeaa! Inspiring video. I like their workshop and enthusiasm! Keep going!:)

  • seaglassvintage

    Judy from seaglassvintage said 4 years ago

    So very, very interesting!

  • patspottery

    Pat Parker from PatsPottery said 4 years ago

    Who knew!!

  • clotheshorsey

    clotheshorsey said 4 years ago

    FROM NEW BRIGHTON AND MISSING IT LIKE THE DICKENS. ILL TAKE 6 STICKS 0F ROCK PLEASE. AND, SOUR LEMON DROPS ONE POUND TEN POUNDA OF UNCLE JOE'S M INT BALLS As well please. AHH I M 'JUST HAVING YOU ON, REALLY, WISH IT WAS TRUE THOUGH./ GOD BLESS YOU ALL. JESSICA.,

  • HoneyThistle

    Wei from HoneyThistle said 4 years ago

    this is ah-mazing! I really want to visit this place now :)

  • ParisCabinet

    JD Kohler from ParisCabinet said 4 years ago

    Great video and family story! Candy making looks like fun and amazing that employees are there so long, says something about the business.

  • NinaRaizel

    Nina from NinaRaizel said 4 years ago

    What a beautiful story! I must have some candy now! I would love to sit there and watch the workers roll the candy all day. It must be tedious work, but it looks like fun. I bet the factory smells wonderful!

  • blakemaree

    Maree Blake from doorknobsigns said 4 years ago

    How wholesome xxxx

  • seasidecloth

    seasidecloth from seasidecloth said 4 years ago

    A five generation legacy - truly amazing and inspiring.

  • rarebeasts

    Brian McNamara from rarebeasts said 4 years ago

    Wow, what an inspiring story.

  • knitsbycaitlin

    Caitlin Edge from knitsbycaitlin said 4 years ago

    Lovely!

  • Powerofflower

    Lorena Balea-Raitz from BaleaRaitzART said 4 years ago

    Wonderful! I am glad that a business like this can survive! Lovely video and story!

  • talartdesign

    Tal Givon from talartdesign said 4 years ago

    gives you hope that in this big computer machine industrial world, a place like this, that gives so many people a decent living..i also loved just watching the way thing are made..it is a fascinating dance..for me anyway. thank you Alison for bringing that..

  • simpleedesigns

    Lee Castle from SimpleeDesigns said 4 years ago

    I wonder if this place is the inspiration for Willie Wonka! I know that I would like to try one of everything ..........except the coconut ice........don't like coconut! I know that Teddy Grey's is on the itinerary the next time I'm in the UK!!

  • VibrantTrains

    VibrantTrains from VibrantTrains said 4 years ago

    How can one order these? No link to the actual store to purchase or order! Would love to order!

  • missclaireh

    Claire Varley from Brighteyesshop said 4 years ago

    Oh my goodness! Reminds me of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, one of my favourite childhood movies!

  • cottonbirddesigns

    Angela Cotton from CottonBirdDesigns said 4 years ago

    Great story!

  • Blucha

    Erika Price from Blucha said 4 years ago

    Great to read about thriving old-fashioned businesses - and their sweets are lovely too (I'm already a fan)!

  • liveindesign

    Jenny Hoole from LiveInDesign said 4 years ago

    What a fantastic happy start to a Saturday morning.....happy people in a happy place.....Fab!!

  • Iammie

    iammie from iammie said 4 years ago

    Love this video!

  • Nakkashe

    Nakkashe from Nakkashe said 4 years ago

    Wow, this was one of the most amazing videos I have ever watched ! I love old fashion ! Hope your very handmade business will go forever ...

  • Freebird53

    Josephine Presutto said 4 years ago

    Beautiful!

  • marlenaburger

    Marlena Burger from MarlenasArtSilks said 4 years ago

    Nice story, love tradition in business. I can't find their product purchase page. Clicked on the link to the candy website but no purchase buttons.

  • TheBerryPress

    Wendy Hogue Berry from TheBerryPress said 4 years ago

    Loved watching them make the candy. Thanks for the video. I hope this shop is around for a very long tme.

  • meanjeanarts

    Jean from Meanjeanarts said 4 years ago

    So nice to see a family run business still thriving after generations. Apparently people like their jobs as no one leaves. I loved watching the candy being stretched and aerated--reminds me of watching the salt water taffy being made at the state fair, and the candy sticks being rolled and cut was hypnotic. I love making candy myself (truffles, caramels, toffee, marshmallows) and I'm happy to keep to my own small scale, but it's always fun to be the kid in the candy store.

  • mazedasastoat

    mazedasastoat from mazedasastoat said 4 years ago

    This brought back so many happy memories. I spent 11 years working in a traditional bakery, where all the machines were heavy, cast iron, belt driven monsters & all the work was done by hand. What killed it was that when the machinery broke down eventually, there was no way to get it fixed. The old-fashioned low-speed mixers were just like the ones used for sweets, & gave the bread a texture that's lacking in modern high-speed mixes. I ate that bread from the day I was born (well, weaned!) & fully expected to eat it until I died. Losing places like that are more than the end of an era or a way of life... I hope Teddy Gray's manages to continue for ever!

  • andiespecialtysweets

    Jason and Andie from andiespecialtysweets said 4 years ago

    Love to see this business mechanized, but not modernized. How could one not be jolly having their hands in candy all day long : ) Thanks for sharing! Charming.

  • andiespecialtysweets

    Jason and Andie from andiespecialtysweets said 4 years ago

    If you want to order, you have to pick up the phone and call : )

  • Parachute425

    Terry from Parachute425 said 4 years ago

    Wonderful video. Amazing story! Please don't change a thing Teddy Gray.

  • ThePolkadotMagpie

    Polkadot Magpie from ThePolkadotMagpie said 4 years ago

    Martin made another beauty! My favorite so far.

  • ALPHABETSandINK

    Susan Joyce from ALPHABETSandINK said 4 years ago

    Amazing and wonderful! I only live about 40 minutes from there, I think I'll be heading over for a visit! Love the family atmosphere, how everyone loves their job and wants to stay for life, a true testimony of a wonderful job and wonderful employers!

  • clgifts

    CL Gifts from CLGifts said 4 years ago

    Great story and yes, they need to ship internationally! The interior of the building is great, but I don't think the exterior of the building does them justice.

  • FrillRide

    Sally Yon from FrillRide said 4 years ago

    Lovely. I remember buying sweets from the sweet shop when I was a child. I really enjoyed seeing all the old tools and old methods. Those methods seem to force people to work together. No wonder they stay all their life.

  • RoseGems

    Emily from RoseGemstones said 4 years ago

    Oh my gosh! I'm from Dudley and used to visit the Teddy Gray sweet shop in Bewdley so often, honestly, it was like a ritual. It's so amazing! :D

  • clovathistles

    Catherine from ClovaThistles said 4 years ago

    I always wanted to open an old fashion sweetie shop .! and watching this video makes me want to open one .just lock me in the factory with those sweets :) I bet after a week there you stop eating the sweets ! a lovely story thanks for sharing it .....clova thistles

  • AntonellaMia

    AntonellaMia from AntonellaMia said 4 years ago

    Thank you for sharing such a great video!

  • flauntdesignsjewelry

    Lin from FlauntDesignsJewelry said 4 years ago

    Am a Londoner now resiidng in Dallas, TX, and I miss the sticks of named peppermint rock that would be a treat whenever we took a family trip to the seaside! All the old-fashioned hard sweets that you could buy one or two of from the big glass jars up on the shelves in the newsagents on the way back from school :~) Glad to see that there's still a market for 'em and that the old ways have not died in the modern era. Love it!!

  • daisyanndesigns

    Jill from daisyanndesigns said 4 years ago

    I live not far from this company. Visiting their little shop in Dudley town was the highlight of many a childhood shopping trip with my grandparents. Whenever I'm in the town these days I still pop in, the shelves filled with jars and jars of sweets are a sight to behold. Teddy's herbal sweets are a must have in Winter. It's lovely to see them being recognised on such a great site as Etsy.

  • TheresasGourmet

    Theresa Ryales from TheresasGourmet said 4 years ago

    Thank you for sharing! Lovely story.

  • pouch

    pouch from pouch said 4 years ago

    yum, this made my mouth water! I guess if it aint broke, don't fix it Teddy Gray :)

  • littlecherryhill

    Emma from littlecherryhill said 4 years ago

    Oh I'd love a store like this on my corner!!!!!

  • imwende

    Wende from justsewdarlin said 4 years ago

    What a Great story..love watching candy being made..so interesting...love the Calendars...did ya notice.??

  • glitterandstones

    glitterandstones from glitterandstones said 4 years ago

    What an inspiring story! Thank you for sharing:)

  • ElectricOutlet

    Hillary R. from GAEAART said 4 years ago

    that was preetty cool.

  • sukran

    Sukran Kirtis from SukranKirtisJewelry said 4 years ago

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful story..

  • dannylion

    Lauryn Quinn from thefrolickingfrog said 4 years ago

    So mesmerizing watching the candy being made! Loved that!

  • SunflowerGlassworks

    Mary Datwyler from SunflowerGlassworks said 4 years ago

    Delightful video and story - reminds me of my late British grandfather and his affinity for the perfect sweets. Great share!

  • HappyKawaiiSupply

    Shannon from HappyKawaiiSupply said 4 years ago

    I wish we could order some online!

  • CircaMundiVintage

    Randi from CircaMundiVintage said 4 years ago

    Oh that was lovely!!!! Watching people working with their hands, and content with the old ways of doing things. I earnestly hope they keep their current (and past!) business model, instead of throwing everyone onto the street and having machines crank it all out... Just, wow. It warms the cockles of my heart.

  • nickydill

    Nicky Dillerstone from nickydill said 4 years ago

    as one of the ladies in the film said ' you can't beat an old fashioned sweet shop' - absolutely right, long live pear drops and rhubarb and custard

  • FlowerMoundEscape

    Melinda from FlowerMoundEscape said 4 years ago

    Now I want some!! Great story! I have been working more with my daughter lately and loving every moment of it. I wonder if it will last through another generation?

  • madfishclothing

    Sharon Holmes from Madfishstuff said 4 years ago

    What a fantastic story. We supply a shop in St Ives and the 2 lovely ladies who own it are from Dudley .. So can't wait to show them this film. The old ways are sometimes the best for learning a skill and the memories you keep. Made my heart warm watching a business thriving like this in the UK. BUSTIN as they say up there. I know what's on my list when they visit Dudley again .. Pear drops I have no doubt they'll last.

  • OncleHope

    Oncle Hope from OncleHope said 4 years ago

    HOW WONDERFULL!

  • pouss

    Amanda from pouss said 4 years ago

    Raspberry ruffles, YUM! This film is lovely, what a great story. Amanda x

  • poplovedesigns

    Andrea Hughes from PopLoveHers said 4 years ago

    omnomnomnomnom... I'm sorry, I can't make a coherent comment when there's candy involved - my internal child just rears it's tangled head and that's that!

  • emberair

    emberair from EmberandAir said 4 years ago

    Wonderful story! And those raspberry truffles look amazing!

  • irinisklavounou

    irini from IrinisWorld said 4 years ago

    Totally surreal. I had no idea candy is made.....excuse me...'could' be made like that. Actually not that appetizing, but then i never had a sweet tooth. Amazing. The whole world used to be like that. Much sweeter.

  • smarceau05

    Sarah Marceau from CraftyFemmeFatal said 4 years ago

    that was amazing

  • dotursx4

    Ann from NaniKoraVintage said 4 years ago

    Loved this very sweet story.

  • Catfishhh

    Catfishhh from Catfishhh said 4 years ago

    Bostin! I'm from Dudley and it's made my day to see this on Etsy. I have to walk past Teddy's on my way to and from the dentist...

  • oberdes

    HEINZ from oberdes said 4 years ago

    AMAZING!! The best is always a family owned BIZ!!

  • mickeylowe

    Mickey Lowe said 4 years ago

    I can't say WHEN I have enjoyed learning about a business as much as when I viewed this beautiful video! I can WAIT to order some Teddy Gray sweets now! LOL One of my fondest memories is of a really TINY little candy store at the end of my Grandmother's long path in South Carolina way back in the 50's. I didn't know anyone had wonderful HAND-MADE sweets anymore. I am SO glad to learn of it. Your blog is wonderful. Keep it up!

  • EriMill

    Erin Miller from ThreePoisonApples said 4 years ago

    I wish there were still more of these businesses, everyone just looks happy to be there!

  • mochamacaroon

    Celia from SproutandSprout said 4 years ago

    This was so nice to watch. How interesting that they are keeping to tradition in the production of these sweets. How cruel it is that we watched them being made and cant eat them right this minute! :)

  • aressa

    aressa from OriginalBridalHanger said 4 years ago

    Interesting story....Thanks for taking the time to share!

  • IndiaRoseVintage

    Catherine from IndiaRoseVintage said 4 years ago

    Wow, what a sweet, charming company this is! Now, I'm craving the chocolate covered coconut ice!! I loved watching this video.

  • glendalee

    glenda puhek from glendalee said 4 years ago

    So, there's no way to buy these sweets in America. It just makes me want to try them.

  • elisabettadalpr

    Elisabetta Dal Prà from BettyHome said 4 years ago

    You feel the passion for what they do every day and that's the greatest thing ever! I love the old lady who works without computer! Isn't that amazing in 2013? This factory is a great example of how to preserve a business and work happily in a familiar environment. Just great!!

  • MyThaiSupply

    Tik from SeaSideVibes said 4 years ago

    Great to see a family run place still operating! It reminds me a lot of Thailand and the changes that are happening now with big business.

  • anlin

    Linda Williams from Obiko said 4 years ago

    It's so good to see a family run business with such such loyal staff. Please don't change.

  • lestradeandgregson

    Louise Date said 4 years ago

    A bag of Teddy Gray's used to be a treat for me and my brother if we were staying with my Nana, it's so good to see them still going. The smell of the little shop in Bewdley was always amazingly floral. Herbal tablets are very much an acquired taste though...

  • gramkinpaperstudio

    gramkinpaperstudio from gramkinpaperstudio said 4 years ago

    Amazing! Love stories like that and the fact that no on leaves, but stay and retire there, it means there happy. Love that fact that the secretary doesn't use computers.... and the fact that people are astonished, lol....things actually got done before computers were invented people, lol

  • VegasLuxe

    Ashley Jones from AJEmbellishments said 3 years ago

    I think they are so sweet! Great video, very inspiring.

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