Introducing Jack Webley

2 minute read

Food, cooking and sharing, the result is a gesture of love. Whether it be for family or friends cooking is something to be relished.

I hope by sharing these Spice Chests with you, you are able to save yourself gallons of time and frustration by endlessly scouring your local shop spices. Also by sharing these recipes I hope to inspire, teach and help you cook incredibly special meals.

Where it all began

Harold (Jack) Webley was my great grandfather, and although I never met him in person, he has come alive through my father regaling stories of him regularly and creating a figure that I hold in admiration. Jack was a true Englishman, a farmer by trade and living in the South of England. 

During World War II, Jack was a patrol leader in Britain’s “Auxiliary” forces, although who came to be reknown as the British Resistance. When I first watched Dad's army and saw Captain Mainwaring, Jack Webley immediately came to mind which I was rather conflicted about.

 Further reading and research told a story of resistance fighters, who in the event of a German invasion of Britain (which as we know was a serious and real threat with Operation Sea Lion), to disrupt German operations for as long as possible without being captured. Equipped with some of the most dangerous and advanced weaponry available to infantry during the war, the life expectancy for these soldiers was 12 days. In the event of a unit being surrounded, they were to shoot each other, or blow themselves up with their own explosives. Every unit was also issued with a gallon of rum for their bitterly cold Operational Bases (OB’s). This was a secret guerrilla army and many of their OB’s still haven’t been found to this day.

The Tales of Jack Webley are fictional – the characters and events are set in fiction, however I have tried to weave my own experiences and character in at points. I have not yet sailed around the world on a clipper boat named the Countess trying different foods and spices that only the very wealthiest could have afforded at the time (Nutmeg was the same price as gold at this point). However, I have driven halfway across the world from London to Mongolia in a Nissan Micra and made my way down the length of India in a three wheeler Tuk Tuk with an engine the size of a lawnmower. On these incredible adventures I met some truly amazing people and tried some truly beautiful food, that’s not to say I did not have my fair share of abysmal food along the way, however I can assure you the recipes I share with you will be far from abysmal. 

I look forward to sharing this journey with you and hope you find happiness in my stories and recipes, and share the love of cooking and sharing food.

Part 1 of his story will be released 17/11/2020


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