Scons or scoans

Yesterday I tweeted a photo from a folder I was cataloguing on a ‘Woman’s Fair and Exhibition’ in London in 1938.  Well today I’m cataloguing another folder of papers regarding the exhibition.  These include letters from the Liaison Officer of the Woman’s Fair and Exhibition.  One of these letters in an enquiry for the name of the NUWT entrants to a scone making competitions.  The, very short, reply from the NUWT ‘In reply to your letter of today, I have to state that our members will not be taking part in the Scone-making Competition’.  Now maybe this wasn’t meant to be derisory but in my head the tone of this letter is very scathing, as in ‘why would we be bothered about scones when we’re trying to secure the right of women to equal pay for equal work!’  However I now eat my words [excuse the terrible pun] as further on in the folder, dated a month later, I’ve just found a letter from an NUWT member stating she will be pleased to take part in the competition but is ‘no cook’.

Papers from the 'Woman's Fair and Exhibition', NUWT Collection, ref UWT/D/133 ©Institute of Education Archive


The title refers to the different ways of pronouncing it – apparently in England it’s pronounced scoan though I’ve yet to hear it referred to as that, except by Hyacinth Bouquet!


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