75-year-old Sainsbury’s ration books found in back of cupboard by St Albans pensioner

Copyright image 2015©
John de Marris, 83, presents his and his family's ration books to Darren Scot

Copyright image 2015© John de Marris, 83, presents his and his family's ration books to Darren Scott, Manager of Sainbury's St Albans - Credit: Fiona Hanson

After finding 75-year-old ration books “tucked away” in the back of a cupboard, a St Albans resident has spoken of his memories of wartime rationing.

Copyright image 2015©
John de Marris, 83, presents his and his family's ration books to Darren Scot

Copyright image 2015© John de Marris, 83, presents his and his family's ration books to Darren Scott, Manager of Sainbury's St Albans - Credit: Fiona Hanson

John de Marris, 83, found the book of ration cards for the now-closed Gerrards Cross branch of Sainsbury’s last month and contacted his local supermarket in St Albans.

He said: “They thought it was really interesting and they invited me in to show them off.”

John was just a boy when he, his mother and his grandmother started using the ration books in 1940.

He said: “The food was not bad, actually. It didn’t have any preservatives or anything like that so it was all good stuff.

Copyright image 2015©
John de Marris, 83, presents his and his family's ration books to Darren Scot

Copyright image 2015© John de Marris, 83, presents his and his family's ration books to Darren Scott, Manager of Sainbury's St Albans - Credit: Fiona Hanson


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“We used to get our soap, our clothes, all our meats and our tea with [the ration books]. My mum used to keep chickens so we were known as PKs - poultry keepers – so we didn’t need to take any eggs.”

Darren Scott, manager of St Albans Sainsbury’s, said: “Sainsbury’s has been a big part of people’s lives for over 150 years now and John’s ration books donation demonstrates that in a really touching way.

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“I am thankful for this true goose-bumps-moment that made me even more proud of our heritage.”

Sainsbury’s are looking to archive John’s collection of ration books.

Sainsbury's WWII rationing advert

Sainsbury's WWII rationing advert - Credit: Archant

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