The Huntley & Palmers Collection

The Huntley & Palmers Collection is the archive that was formed by the famous Reading biscuit company during its 150 year history. The collection shows the development of the company and the impact it had on Reading and its people.

In 1974 the Huntley & Palmers Collection was deposited with Reading Museum and Reading University special collections. In 1989 Nabisco Ltd, the then owners of the Huntley & Palmers brand, donated the collection to the Museum and the University.

The Museum material consists of nearly 7,000 items including biscuit tins, photographs, oral histories, films and advertising ephemera dating from 1822 to the 1980s. The University special collections holds the documentary materials, mostly business records, relating to all aspects of the firm. Both organisations also hold material from Peek Frean and Jacobs biscuit companies with whom Huntley & Palmers merged to form Associated Biscuits Ltd in 1969.

The Huntley & Palmers Gallery

A unique Huntley & Palmers gallery was created in 2000 when a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund enabled the extensive refurbishment of the Reading Museum. The gallery tells the story of the great biscuit firm using over 600 objects.

In the gallery you can see a fascinating selection of items, including nearly 300 tins from the first printed biscuit tin of 1868 to the last tins made for Huntley & Palmers in the 1980s. In addition, rare archive footage provides an insight into the working life of biscuit factory employees during the 1950s.

Go to the Huntley & Palmers timeline 

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