A MUSEUM’S writer-in-resident is taking on a challenge to live on 1950s rations for a week in the run-up to a festival placing the spotlight on the 1950s.

Becci Sharrock, who is in residence at Beamish Museum, near Stanley, County Durham, will be going sparingly on her sugar and taking it easy with her tea, to try and understand what it was like for families living on rations during the Second World War, and into the 1950s.

She began her dietary experiment on Thursday and ends this Wednesday.

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Despite only being allowed 2oz of cheese and 4oz of margarine during the week, Becci is excited about the challenge.

“I worry about being hungry, but I'm pleased that bread and potatoes weren't rationed.

“You can also have as many vegetables as you want, especially if you had grown them yourself, so in some ways I might actually be healthier from it.

“I’m a foodie anyway, writing for a food blog and owning a ridiculous collection of cook books – over 100.

“I’m really interested in finding out about rationing during the '50s, but I’ve never done anything like this before.

“Seeing how food and recipes have changed has been really fascinating.”

Rationing during the Second World War started in 1940 and only ended in 1954.

During this time there was a push to “Grow Your Own” as families were encouraged to plant their own fruit and vegetables. Typical wartime recipes from the era included mock apricot pie, carrot fudge and rabbit pie.

Becci has used a range of cook books from the Beamish collection to come up with her meal plans for the week.

Although chicken, rabbit and game were unrationed Becci is limited to 4oz of bacon and ham, 3oz of sweets and only one egg for the week.

She added: “I'm hoping, as well as getting an idea of what it might have been like for home cooks in the '50s, that it will make me think a bit more about what I'm eating and encourage me to be a bit less wasteful.

“When things are rationed so tightly you have to make the most of all the food you have and I think that could be a really useful lesson.”

Becci will also be at the Festival of 50s, which takes place from Thursday July 14 to Sunday July 17.

You can find out more on our website www.beamish.org.uk or visit Becci's blog http://beamishtales.co.uk/.