The Bakewell Pudding
"Putting The Record Straight"
Here is an abbreviated version of the history of the creation of the first Bakewell Pudding, compiled by a direct descendant of Mrs Ann Greaves :-|
"Putting the clock back to the early 1800's and relating the story of the Bakewell Pudding as now known to me from stories passed down
through the family as far back as Mrs Greaves herself. Most of these have been confirmed through all the extensive research done by me and many other members of the Hudson/Greaves
family (320 still living at the last count throughout the world!). I have even spoken to relatives of the waitress at The Rutland Arms who assisted in the making of the first
Many stories incorrectly tell of the Pudding being made by a Mrs Graves when a simple Census search or Parish Records search shows that her correct name was Mrs Ann Greaves.
Other versions state that the Bakewell Pudding was first created in the 1860's but Mrs Greaves had retired from the Rutland Arms in 1857 at the age of 80 and had moved
to Manchester to live with her younger daughter.
If you search the internet for the place where the Bakewell Pudding was first made the majority of results say The White Horse but it is wrong and has to be put right.
This was impossible because it was pulled down in 1803 to make room for the building of the impressive Rutland Arms Inn which opened for business in 1804. The first pudding was actualy
made at The Rutland Arms.
"In order to tell the story of the Bakewell Pudding we need have a look at the main characters involved with its creation. In 1803 James Hudson, with his wife, Ann, and two daughters,
moved to Bakewell from Cromford. He had been asked by the Duke of Rutland to oversee the pulling down of the White Horse Inn and to get the Rutland Arms Inn, which was built in roughly
the same spot, ready for opening in 1804. James also farmed 1,000 acres at Haddon Hall Farm. In 1804 Ann gave birth to a son, James, at the inn who later grew up to become the Assistant
Secretary of the Royal Society and the Secretary of the Royal Agricultural Society in London.
James Hudson 1805
In April 1805 James Hudson died at the age of 29 and was buried in Bakewell churchyard alongside the south door of the church. His gravestone is still there and reads "Here Lies interred
the Body of JAMES HUDSON, Of the Rutland Arms Inn, Who died 19th April 1805, In the 29 Year of his Age. He was an affectionate Husband, a tender Father, a sincere Friend, And died regretted
by a numerous Acquaintance". The licence of the inn was swiftly transferred to Ann Hudson to allow her to continue the business.
Little more than six months later Ann married one of her late husband's friends, William Greaves, who was by profession a plumber and glazier! Ann initially had to show William the ropes
but he soon stepped into the role of innkeeper. Four year later he also became the postmaster with Ann acting as his deputy. In 1806 Ann Greaves gave birth to a son, William, who was known
within the family as Billy to distinguish him from his father and grandfather, all named William Greaves! Billy Greaves was born in the Rutland Arms and he died there in 1894.
Ann's second husband, William, died in 1831 and Ann took over the licence of the Rutland Arms yet again and held it until she retired in 1857 at the age of 80. From 1845 until 1857 Billy
and his wife, Mary, the sister of Lady Sarah Paxton, were the proprietors of the Old Bath Royal Hotel and Posting House in Matlock Bath. They returned to Bakewell to run the Rutland when
his mother, Ann, moved to Manchester to be closer to her younger daughter, Ann Bradley.
Now to concentrate on the other partner in the creation of the Bakewell Pudding! Ann Wheeldon was born into a farming family in Bonsall in 1833 and by the time of the 1851 census she was
a 17 year old house servant working for a doctor at Matlock Bridge. Sometime after 1851 Ann Wheeldon moved to the Rutland Arms in Bakewell where she worked as a waitress. This means that it was sometime between then and 1857, when Mrs Greaves retired, that the original Bakewell Pudding was created. Ann Wheeldon, who had been called in to the kitchen from her post as a waitress, made a mistake with the recipe, the customers enjoyed the different taste, Mrs Greaves made a note of the new ingredients and the rest is history. Ann Wheeldon later had an illegitimate daughter with Billy Greaves, but that is another story! She later married a farmer and lived in Bonsall until she died at the age of 76.
Ann Greaves died in Manchester in 1866 at the grand old age of 88.
William & Ann Greaves
The family gravestone in Bakewell churchyard can be seen a few feet from the south door and reads "Here lie the remains
of William Greaves of the Rutland Arms Hotel, who died XXI December MDCCCXXXI aged LX years. Ann relict of the above died XI July MDCCCLXVI Aged LXXXIX (although her death certificate
shows her age at death as 88!) and was interred at St John's Church, Longsight, Manchester on the XVI"
A version of the Bakewell Pudding recipe reached the Wilson family and they produced puddings at their premises in Rutland Square for many years. Their original premises are now known as
The Old Original Bakewell Pudding Shop.
Original Bloomer Advert
Another local story is that the secret recipe for the Bakewell Pudding was left by Mrs Greaves in her will to a Mr Radford who then passed the recipe on to Mr Bloomer. This claim is
disproved by the simple fact that when Mrs Greaves retired and moved to live with her daughter in Manchester at the age of 80 years old in 1857, the Mr Radford in question was aged 5,
and when Ann died in 1866 he was still only 15 years old! However, Mr Bloomer did get his recipe when Will Hudson, the licensee of the Castle & Commercial Hotel in Bridge Street gave
his very good friend, George Bloomer, a copy of the original recipe of the Bakewell Pudding in order to "even things out" in the town! As a thank-you for his gift of the recipe Will
was rewarded with a loaf of bread from Bloomers Shop in Matlock Street every day for the rest of his life! A very generous gift as Will Hudson lived until 1953 and was aged 88 when he died.
Will's grandsons still remember collecting Granddad's loaf!"
Information on this page was provided by Paul Hudson the great-great-great-grandson of Mrs Ann Greaves who,
together with a member of her staff at THE RUTLAND ARMS HOTEL was responsible for the creation of the first Bakewell Pudding in the mid-1800's is told fully in his latest book.