This week's extract comes from my chapter on Tripe - a much-loved delicacy on the tables of Lancashire even to this day.
I go on to examine how one major chain of shops in Lancashire, Chorley Co-operative Cattle Products, not only sold tripe but ran restaurants selling a wide variety of cooked tripe dishes. Their processing factory near Chorley was one of the largest of its type. At the height of its popularity in the 30s, CCCP had a shop selling cow products with a café in the back on almost every corner and over 100 exclusive tripe restaurants, some of which were surprisingly ornate.
Its flagship restaurant on Market Street, Manchester, was a magnificent art deco building outside which there would often be queues, despite the fact that it had seating for 200 diners. Waiters dressed in evening suits would serve staple dishes such as stewed tripe and onions as well as speciality dishes such as Tripe Wellington (tripe served in a rubber boot). Less discerning diners would throw the tripe away and eat the Wellington. The Market Street restaurant was a firm favourite with the stars of Alfred Spatchcock’s Hollinwood film studios who would often visit between takes during filming of movies.
Their shops and restaurants are probably best remembered for their distinctive red shop fronts with a yellow ‘sickle and hammer’ logo which led many people to believe mistakenly that it was connected with the Soviet Union. This was completely unfounded but led to regular attacks on its shops by fascists. In 1936, CCCP was forced to rebrand when the windows of its Manchester Market Street restaurant were smashed by a gang led by vegetarian fascist leader, Oswald Muesli.
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