Get your FREE tin of Quality Street at the Halifax Christmas Lights Switch-on

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Christmas is fast approaching and here’s some festive cheer - you can claim a free tin of Quality Street to mark its 75th anniversary.

TOFFEE and chocolate in colourful wrappers are traditional treats that make Christmas special every year.

There’s nothing like settling down in front of the TV with friends and family and lifting the lid on a delicious tin of Quality Street chocolates. Oh, that aroma! Those flavours!

Everyone has their favourite and there’s always plenty to share.

This year, to mark the 75th anniversary of the manufacture of Quality Street in Halifax, food giant Nestlé has linked up with the Courier to offer our readers a fantastic festive freebie - find out more on the facing page.

Earlier this year, Courier features writer Virginia Mason - a lifelong admirer of the Quality Street brand - was given a special tour of the Halifax factory.

Walking in the footsteps of the “Toffee King”, John Mackintosh, she learned about the history of the business, the way its legacy continues to this day, and the way that, from humble beginnings, the brightly wrapped temptations - including the toffee penny, the caramel swirl, the toffee finger, the green triangle and the orange chocolate crunch - form part of a brand renowned the world over.

Created by the Mackintosh business in 1936, Quality Street changed the way confectionery was manufactured and sold.

The brand used ground-breaking technology such as the world’s first twist-wrapping machine to make chocolate affordable for working families.

In Halifax, the Mackintosh family business already produced best-selling toffees made from inexpensive local ingredients such as milk, sugar beet and eggs.

The company decided to make chocolate more affordable by using it to cover the toffees.

It packaged the sweets in brightly coloured tins, decorated inside with bunting and ribbons, and sold them at a reasonable price.

The Quality Street branding featured two characters wearing old fashioned dress, known affectionately as Miss Sweetly and Major Quality, who were characters in the J M Barrie (author of Peter Pan) novel called Quality Street.

By using a tin box, instead of a cardboard one, Mackintosh ensured the scents wafted out as soon as you opened it. The different textures, colours, shapes and sizes of the sweets made opening the tin and consuming its contents a noisy, vibrant experience that the whole family could enjoy.

Today, Quality Street is still produced in Halifax, where it continues to combine tradition with innovation.

The sweets are free from artificial colours, flavourings and preservatives, and since 2009, the packaging has been completely recyclable.

The coloured wrappers are biodegradable and can be composted with garden waste, while the foil wrappers and the tin container can be recycled in the same way as cans.

To mark the Quality Street anniversary, Nestlé has created a new, limited edition chocolate bar. Called My Purple Bar, the chocolate bar is based on the “Purple One”, the most popular sweet in the Quality Street assortment.

Each sweet contains a whole hazelnut, which is surrounded by caramel and coated with milk chocolate. The new bar is made of four Purple One sweets joined together.

More than 23,000 tonnes of Quality street are produced in Halifax every year and of that, around 7,000 tonnes are for the export market. In the Middle East, tins still carry the nostalgic images of Major Quality and Miss Sweetly and the Mackintosh name. The Canadians, the French and the Japanese also love the sparkling wrappers that host favourite fillings encased in creamy chocolate.

HOW TO CLAIM YOUR FREE TIN OF QUALITY STREET:

All you need to do is collect six tokens this week. We will print a token each day until Saturday, November 26. Once you have collected your tokens you can redeem your FREE tin of Quality Street, on Saturday between 12.30pm and 6pm, at the Halifax Christmas lights switch-on in the Piece Hall, Halifax. Simply call at the Halifax Courier promotions stand and we’ll be happy to see you....don’t worry if you’ve missed any tokens, as you will be able to purchase additional copies at the Halifax Courier promotions stand on the day.

Terms & Conditions: Each set of tokens can be redeemed once per person. Offer is limited to one tin per person on a first-come, first-served basis, while stocks last. No photocopied tokens accepted. Quality Street tins must be redeemed at stated venue, date and between stated times.

See today’s Courier for the first voucher.