Royal Sussex Garden trugs, #4 and #6, are a quintessential English garden tool. You can read about their long and royal history in just a moment. What you should know now is how useful, durable and attractive they are (and just wait until they get used and worn in...then they really look their best!). It's a place to store your everyday garden tools, carry your freshly harvested cut flowers and veg, load up for a picnic, and bring to your local farm stand instead of a shopping bag. Trugs are lightweight, strong and striking.
Now, here's a bit of their history....
Trugs began with the Anglo Saxons, when trugs or "trogs" were used to measure grains and liquids and came in different sizes, each numbered. They were made of solid timber and quite heavy. In the 1800's, Thomas Smith of East Sussex, England, re-invented the trug, making it lightweight by using Sweet Chestnut and Cricket Bat Willow. His design caught the eye of Queen Victoria at the Great Exhibition of 1851 and she became a patron. Thomas Smith was awarded a Royal Warrant and his trugs became known as Royal Sussex Trugs.
Trugs fell out of favor once traditional farming became mechanized and farmers no longer needed trugs to harvest vegetables, eggs and grain. However, they continued to be made for gardeners, who still found them useful. Another royal warrant was secured from the Royal Estate at Windsor in the 1980's, where they are currently in use. The present owners have been making trugs by hand, using Thomas Smith's same methods, since 1989. Each trug is signed on the underside by its maker.
#4 - 15.5" wide x 8.5" deep x 8.5" high
#6 - 19.5" wide x 11.5" deep x 10.5" high
Made of sustainably sourced Sweet Chestnut and Cricket Bat Willow in England