logo - Join me in the 1900s mid C20th
The webmaster, Pat Cryer, as an older child

When microwave ovens
appeared on the British market

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I was in my twenties when the events and observations of these recollections occurred.

I first heard about the 'magic' way of microwave cooking sometime in the early 1960s. I was teaching at a school, and the husband of one of the other teachers was an engineer. He had come home from a conference where he had seen a demonstration. None of us teachers really believed it when we were told about it. Maybe, we thought, it might work on a small scale in a laboratory somewhere, but it couldn't possibly affect us.

How wrong we were. Microwave ovens were soon produced on a commercial scale. Many potential customers were put off as we teachers had been because it was simply 'impossible'. After all, we had used hobs, gas ovens or coal-fired kitchen ranges all our lives, as had our parents and grandparents before us.

Soon, though, as a few brave souls started buying microwave ovens.

These early microwave ovens were not without their problems, particularly as they had no turntables, so causing hot spots in the food. However, they rapidly became more sophisticated, and the news spread so that microwave ovens became, for most of us, an indispensible piece of kitchen equipment. Yet even as I write, I know older people born in the 1920s and before, who still won't touch them.

If you can add anything to this page or provide a photo, I would be pleased to hear from you.

Pat Cryer, webmaster

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This website Join me in the 1900s is a contribution to the social history of everyday life in 20th century Britain from the early 1900s to about 1960, seen through personal recollections and illustrations, with the emphasis on what it was like to live in those times.