We were wondering where our love of cheese came from, then a relative researched our family tree and low and behold - we are related to one Cooper Thornhill - the man credited with first marketing Stilton Cheese - a most colourful man; here is his potted history:
"The pioneer of blue Stilton was Cooper Thornhill, owner of the Bell Inn on the Great North Road, in the village of Stilton. In 1730, Thornhill discovered a distinctive blue cheese while visiting a small farm in rural Leicestershire. He fell in love with the cheese and made a business arrangement that granted the Bell Inn exclusive marketing rights to blue Stilton. Soon thereafter, wagon loads of cheese were being delivered to the inn. Since the main stagecoach routes from London to Northern England passed through the village of Stilton he was able to promote the sale of this cheese and the legend of Stilton rapidly spread."