Cheese on Toast / Pizza

In October 1912 Mr Wilf Chumbly, of Halton near Lancaster, was looking for a warm meal with all the delicious taste of the cheese sandwich (with maybe only 50% of the bread). He had the idea to create a piece of toast and then to put cheese on top of it. Wilf called his new creation “Cheese on toast”.

The traditional Skittle's 12 inch "pizza" cheese on toast

The traditional Skittle's 12 inch "pizza" cheese on toast

His creation became wildly popular with his friends and relatives and soon he had opened the first home delivery food service, “Skittles” (named after the game he would play down at his local pub). Any resident of Lancaster, or the surrounding area, could call up Skittles and Wilf would cycle round to their house with a steaming hot piece of cheese on toast in a cardboard box.

When phoning in their order the broad Lancaster accent of Wilf’s customers meant that the phrase “Can I have a 12 inch piece of cheese on toast please, Wilf” would sound like “Can I have a 12 inch ‘pizza’ cheese on toast please, Wilf” and so in 1924 he renamed his company “Skittle’s Pizza” and created the famous logo  known around the world.

Wilf developed his product line to start adding extra ingredients to his cheese on toast and soon he had a variety of popular favourites, one of the most popular being the ham and Pineapple “Morecome”, named after the local seaside town due to its proximity to both several pig farms and the Del Monte canning plant.

Soon rip-offs of Wilf’s “pizza” had started appearing around the world and just like had happened with football and the squirrel previously it was the Americans who took a good idea and ruined it. Instead of keeping the traditional square shape they decided to make it round, meaning that a customer ordering a 12 inch pizza, instead of getting 144 square inches of cheese dripping goodness would instead get a meagre 113.097 square inches. It is this ridiculously shaped sham-pizza that  is now more prominent but true pizza aficionados still seek out the Skittle’s authentic version and add a splash of Lea and Perrin’s sauce before eating.

Related non-invention:
Welsh Rarebit (Non-invented by the Welsh): Oi Aled, if you are going to nick an English meal and pretend it’s Welsh at least add a bloody leek.


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