Ten photos showing our bakeries as they used to be
Once, most villages had a home bakery and larger breadmaking enterprises flourished in the larger towns. Many of these small and large businesses have now disappeared but their memory remains 'just out of the oven' fresh in these photos from the EDP archives.
The ten bakeries featured in our archive photo gallery are:
1) The Norwich Co-operative Society's bakery was for many years based at Queen's Road in the city. Some of the large ovens which baked hundreds of loaves an hour as they flowed slowly through them can be seen in this picture from May 1958.
2) At the Co-op bakery in Queen's Road the bread quality is being inspected in April 1961 by (left to right) Mr F Day, manager, Mr G Hook, bread foreman and Mr E Orford, Inside inspector.
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3) In our second photo from 1961, loaves at the Co-op bakery go into the machine and come out sliced and wrapped, ready for the customer.
4) Another large bakery in Norwich was the Sunshine Bread Company on Aylsham Road. It had joined forces with Matthes bakery in Gorleston, becoming among the largest private bakery businesses in the country. By 1963 new plant installed in the factory made it one of the most up to date in the country, with bread capacity of over 4,000 loaves an hour. One of the automated machines is shown in this photo from April 1963.
5) Stannards, renowned in Norwich for a bakery business that began in 1858, had recently expanded to a new shop in Castle Street in 1965. This was one of four retail outlets operated by the company, including a coffee shop and restaurant and a new bakery in Mile Cross Lane. The firm was taken over by another long-established Norwich bakery business, Ashworth and Pike, in 1967.
6) The interior of Stannards in Castle Street shows a wide range of bread on offer to the discerning clientele in November 1965.
7) Dowson's Oven Fresh Bakery in the St Peter's Street area of Lowestoft's old market was pictured just before its demolition in 1967 to make way for new housing.
8) Mr Donald (Jim) Heppell (right) is shown at his bakery in Hempton near Fakenham with Mr A Sutherland turning out hot cross buns in April 1976. On his retirement in 1978, Mr Heppell celebrated 25 years of trading from the premises overlooking the village green and a total of 47 years in the bakery trade.
9) After a break of 15 years, Swanton Morley baker Mr Milne fired up his ovens again in the Mill House Bakery in 1980 and was back producing bread, pies and confectionery in the premises behind his home. The newly-opened bakery was part of a new commercial lease of life in the village, with a butcher's and fruit and vegetable shop planned. Mr Milne is pictured on the left, with colleague Mr Alf Dewing.
10) Bloomer's Bakery in Melton Constable had only been open a year when this photo was taken in 1984. The shop had been a bakery up until the 1960s when it was left empty and derelict for almost 20 years before it was taken over by Mr Manfred Schmidt. He successfully introduced Continental-style bread and patisseries and was planning to expand the business by starting a German delicatessen in the same premises.