13 May 2012

English town celebrates 250 years of the sandwich

6:06 am on 13 May 2012

The English town of Sandwich is celebrating the 250th anniversary of the meal which bears its name.

The first written record of the sandwich was in 1762 when John Montagu, the fourth Earl of Sandwich, asked for a dish of beef served between slices of bread, so he could eat while continuing a game of cards.

Tradition has it that his friends asked to "have the same as Sandwich" and the name caught on.

Over the weekend, the east Kent town hosts sandwich-making competitions and re-enactments of the moment the fourth Earl of Sandwich asked for the food in bread, the BBC reports.

Sandwich Celebration Festival organiser Mandy Wilkins said it had had interest from around the world, including the United States, Canada, Germany, Switzerland, France and Russia.

According to the British Sandwich Association the industry employs more than 300,000 people in the United Kingdom and has a commercial value of over £6 billion.