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Lucy H Yates

Lucy Helen Yates (1863-c.1935) was born in Basford, near Nottingham, the daughter of a lacemaker. In about 1892 she began writing for the Girls’ Own Paper and other periodicals, contributing both fiction and advice on housekeeping and cookery; at least, she began signing her articles at that time, but it seems likely that she had been working as a journalist before this. Her first publication in volume form was The Profession of Cookery from a French Point of View (London: Ward Lock 1894) (possibly she had grown up partly in France) while The Convalescent's Diet appeared in 1901. Evidently she was a suffragist, for the Manchester Evening News reported (18 June 1914) that at a meeting in Caxton Hall, London, of the Women's Freedom League (the non-violent group that broke away from the WSPU in 1907) she lectured on 'The Financial Independence of Women’ and ‘told them to read the money column in the newspapers. “They would find it quite as interesting as a cookery book.” (Laughter).' Several of her books, such as The Management of Money A Handbook of Finance for Women (London: 1903) and Business Matters for Women Simply Explained (London: Pitman 1908) deal with this topic. By this time she was living in Cheyne Walk, Chelsea with her elder sister Amy. What's Good to Eat appeared in 1926 and Marriage on Small Means in 1931. Lucy Yates contributed at various times to Good Words, The Country Home, Sylvia’s AnnualThe Young WomanThe Woman’s Magazine, The Queen, The Leisure HourThe Epicure and Country Life. She also did some broadcasting: the BBC commissioned a talk on ‘A Mid-Winter Excursion Trip to Africa’ in March 1925.  (She had returned from Durban in February 1924; and in 1912 had written In Camp and Kitchen: A Handy Guide for Emigrants and Settlers.)  The Country Housewife’s Book (1934) was the last of her many books. 

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