“Royal Sussex Trug” garden basket
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In the 1820s, shortly before Queen Victoria's access to the throne, a man from Sussex, named Thomas Smith, invented the "Sussex Trug": a basket made of chestnut and willow wood assembled with copper nails, inspired from old “trogs” once used in Anglo-Saxon farms to measure grain, beer or milk.
A few years later, Thomas Smith exhibited his basket at the 1851 World's Fair in Hyde Park. Queen Victoria was immediately seduced and placed an order to offer it to members of the “Royal Family”.
The Sussex Trug then becomes “Royal”, and a symbol of the traditional, world-famous English gardening scene.
Today, “Royal Sussex Trugs” are still made “the old way”: a wooden basket made from a handle and rim of sweet chestnut wood. The body of the trug is made of five or seven thin boards of white willow. Nails are in copper to avoid rust.
This model here, called number 04, is elongated with nearly square edges.
NB: Each basket is unique, authenticated, numbered and signed by the craftsman who made it.