The Chocolate Works

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The Chocolate Works
Terry's Factory - - 798903.jpg
The former Terry's chocolate factory, 2008. Taken from the 4th floor of the Ebor stand at York Racecourse
General information
TypeFormer Chocolate-factory
Architectural styleArt Deco
Town or cityYork
Coordinates53°56′26″N 1°05′23″W / 53.94068°N 1.089596°W / 53.94068; -1.089596Coordinates: 53°56′26″N 1°05′23″W / 53.94068°N 1.089596°W / 53.94068; -1.089596
Construction started1924
The Grade II listed Art Deco-style Time Office and clock tower, seen from the Bishopthorpe Road, York

The Chocolate Works was the confectionery factory of Terry's of York, England. Opened in 1926, it closed in 2005 with the loss of 300 jobs, with production moved to other Kraft Foods sites in mainland Europe. Today, the site is being redeveloped as a mixed-use residential/commercial real estate development.[1]



In 1923, Frank and Noel Terry joined the family business, Terry's of York. They revamped the company, launching new products, and bought a site off Bishopthorpe Road, York on which to develop a new factory. Built in an Art Deco style, the factory known as The Chocolate Works included a distinct clock tower.


Opened in 1926, new products including the Chocolate Apple (1926), Terry's Chocolate Orange (1931), and Terry's All Gold were all developed and produced onsite.[2]

With the onset of World War II, confectionery production was immediately halted. The factory was taken over by F Hills and Sons of Manchester as a shadow factory, to manufacturer and repair aircraft propeller blades.[2]

With the factory handed back to the company post-war, production was difficult due to rationing and limited imports of raw cocoa. As a result, in 1954 production of the chocolate apple was phased out in favour of increased production of the chocolate orange.[2]

In 1975, Terry's was acquired by United Biscuits,[2] forming the bulk of their confectionery division. After UB ran into financial difficulties in the early 1990s, they sold their entire confectionery division to Kraft Foods, who amalgamated it with Jacobs Suchard to create Terry's Suchard.[3]

From 2000, the company brand was changed from Terry's of York to simply Terry's, reducing the company's links to the city. Production was also scaled back, with just UK products and Terry's Chocolate Orange, Terry's All Gold and Twilight made for the international market.[4]


In 2004, Kraft Foods decided to switch production of remaining products All Gold and Chocolate Orange to factories in Belgium, Sweden, Poland and Slovakia, and close the plant.[4] The factory closed on 30 September 2005.[3]


Bought by developers Grantside, they consulted local people on how to develop the site, renamed The Chocolate Works.[5] Their initial proposed development was rejected by the City of York Council.[6] In February 2010, with the Grade II listed Time Office and Art Deco clock tower secured and scheduled for refurbishment and despite objections from the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment,[7] the firm was given planning permission for a £165million mixed-use of residential, commercial and leisure.[1] The eventual scheme is projected to create more than 2,700 new jobs in new and refurbished offices, two hotels, shops, bars, cafés and restaurants, over 250 homes, a nursery, care home and medical centre.[8]

Redevelopment started in 2011, with removal of asbestos by trained and certified contractors, followed by demolition of non-scheduled buildings in early 2012.[9]

In April 2013, the site was acquired by joint developers Henry Boot Developments and David Wilson Homes.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Terry's site". City of York Council. Retrieved 26 June 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d "The Chocolate Works". Retrieved 27 June 2012.
  3. ^ a b "End of era as Terry's site closes". BBC News. 30 September 2005. Retrieved 27 June 2012.
  4. ^ a b "Terry's plans to close York site". BBC News. 19 April 2004. Retrieved 27 June 2012.
  5. ^ "York residents quizzed on Terry's future". The Press. 2008. Retrieved 24 November 2008.
  6. ^ "Developer reviews Terry's options". BBC News. 21 November 2008. Retrieved 24 November 2008.
  7. ^ "The Chocolate Works, York". CABE. Archived from the original on 18 January 2011. Retrieved 26 June 2010.
  8. ^ Merlin Fulcher (8 February 2010). "CABE 'unconvinced' but Chocolate Works wins go-ahead". Retrieved 26 June 2010.
  9. ^ "Terry's chocolate factory in York starts to be demolished". BBC News. 5 March 2012. Retrieved 27 June 2012.

External links[edit]