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The Top 10 Retro Sweets

03 Nov 2017

There is no finer example of the UK’s love of the past than the continued success of the country’s retro sweet industry. In these days when nostalgia is big business, this passion is great news for confectioners – from large manufacturers to small independent outlets. A market that can appeal to all ages and tastes, we take a look at some of the all-time classics that are still popular today. Here is our top ten of the nation’s favourite retro sweets. Drumsticks Lollipops at The British Hamper Company  


Currently celebrating its 60th Birthday, these chewy multi-flavoured lollies have been a favourite of the country’s sweet lovers for decades. Produced by the ever-popular Swizzels Matlow, they are a real timeless classic.

  Milkybar chocolate at The British Hamper Company

Milky Bar

One of the most popular UK sweet brands of all time, and the no. 1 white chocolate brand. First produced back in 1936 by Nestle’, the bar is probably best known for its TV adverts portraying the ‘Milky Bar Kid’ that were first aired in the early sixties.

Refreshers Sweets at The British Hamper Company  


These fizzy centred chews have been a firm favourite with the nation’s sweet lovers for decades. First manufactured in 1955 by Swizzels Matlow, they have been appearing in countless mix bags of sweets ever since.


Delicious Sweets at The British Hamper Company

Love Hearts

For over sixty years, these fun sweets have appeared in the confectioner’s stores of the UK. Each sweet displaying a love related message, the sugary sweet tablets have spread much enjoyment and amusement over the years. They are a Swizzels Matlow Product.


Delightful Treats at The British Hamper Company

Rhubarb and Custard

A timeless classic made with all-natural flavours and colours, this boiled sweet is popular with all ages. A perfectly balanced blend with just a hint of sharpness, a real all-time sweet shop favourite.


Smarties at The British Hamper Company Smarties

One the nation’s undoubted favourites, Smarties were first produced back in 1937. Owned originally by Rowntree and Co, they are now part of the Nestle’ group and the multi-coloured, sugar-coated treats have been enjoyed by generations.


Jelly Sweets at The British Hamper Company

Fruit Pastilles

Delicious fruit sweets with a jelly-like consistency and sugar coating. Made by Rowntree’s, this oldest of British confectionary were first made way back in 1881. As their TV advertising campaign from the 1980’s would say: “You can’t help but chew.”


Classis Sweets at The British Hamper Company

Sherbet Fountain

A real retro classic from the seventies and eighties, and instantly recognisable to all ages of sweet lovers. Inside the bright, distinctive wrapper lies a liquorice dip and sherbet delight that has never lost its appeal. Made by Barratt, it was first manufactured back in 1925.


Jelly Babies at The British Hamper Company

Jelly Babies

Sweet, fruity and delicious, a true timeless classic, made with all-natural flavours and colours. First manufactured in the late 19th century, this soft sugared jelly sweet has been a favourite of generations of sweet lovers – from The Beatles to Doctor Who.


Swizzle Double Lollies

A real classic by Swizzels Matlow, they were introduced in 1952 – The year that Queen Elizabeth II became Queen. Still extremely popular today, they experienced a huge surge in popularity when lolly sucking TV detective Kojak (played by Telly Savalas) was a fixture on the nation’s television screen in the 1970’s.

    So, there you have it. Like all top ten or favourites lists, there’s bound to be much debate over the ones that didn’t feature. However, one thing that can’t be disputed is the high affection in which these classic treats are still held by the sweet lovers of the nation. Thanks for taking the time to read our blog. Please feel free to share it, and let us know your thoughts.