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County Durham's Olivia's bakery opens new shop in Newcastle

The popular social enterprise has launched Olivia’s Artisan Bakery and Cafe in the heart of Gosforth in the Trinity Centre\n

(l-r) Crosbys project manager John Clarke, Crosbys director Ben Crosby, and Olivia's director of food and operations Adrian Watson
(l-r) Crosbys project manager John Clarke, Crosbys director Ben Crosby, and Olivia's director of food and operations Adrian Watson

Well-known County Durham-based bakery Olivia’s has spread its wings and opened a new outlet in Newcastle.

The social enterprise has launched Olivia’s Artisan Bakery and Cafe in the heart of Gosforth in the Trinity Centre.

Olivia’s has built its reputation on its central bakery in Darlington and has other sites in Hurworth, Northallerton, Stokesley and Thirsk.

Now the business has set its sights on winning over new customers in the north of the region, with its range of handcrafted breads, pastries, cakes and light lunches all made, where possible, using the freshest, locally sourced organic and ethically produced ingredients.

Olivia’s latest venture is being supported by Newcastle-based catering equipment supplier Crosbys.

The leading catering company has already helped with the fit out and equipment for the bakery’s other outlets, and again took on the job when the Trinity Centre approached Olivia’s to re-launch its existing café.

Staff at the revamped eatery are working with a number of local suppliers including Ringtons Tea and Acorn Dairy, and serve a range of light breakfasts, lunches and snacks, from rare-breed bacon in an artisan stottie to seasonal soup made from fresh, locally-grown produce.

Olivia’s operates as a social enterprise and works in partnership with young people’s charity The Clervaux Trust to offer vulnerable young adults work experience at its cafés, with the aim of developing their self-confidence, independence and interaction with their local communities.

This programme, which is well established in the existing branches of Olivia’s, provides young people with the chance to learn baking, food preparation and front of house skills, and will be introduced to the new Gosforth site in the coming weeks.

The café will also work with the Trinity Centre to support a range of charitable projects, such as providing subsidised lunches for Age Concern, serving a weekly community lunch for elderly members of the local community, and offering volunteering opportunities.

Additionally, Olivia’s has appointed Adrian Watson as director of food and operations. Adrian, who has worked as an executive chef at Terry Laybourne’s Café 21, and at the Sir John Fitzgerald Group, is working to enhance the café’s product range and presentation, and will be introducing Olivia’s to further local suppliers.

Rick McCordall, managing director of Olivia’s Artisan Bakery and Café, says: “We’d like to thank Crosbys for their support in bringing our first Tyneside café to life. We’ve worked with the staff there for several years now and they have a very good understanding of what we need and how we operate.

“We now have a prominent location in the heart of Gosforth and we’re very much looking forward to getting involved with the local community.

“The location couldn’t be better as it’s a hugely popular meeting place in the centre of the high street. We’re also very pleased to have Adrian on board – he brings a wealth of expertise, creativity and contacts with him, so it’s a very exciting time for the business.”

Crosbys director Ben Crosby adds: “We’re delighted to see Olivia’s continue to grow and thrive.

“The existing Olivia’s bakeries elsewhere in the region are famous in their local communities – not only for the quality of the freshly baked artisan bread, but also for the brilliant work they carry out with young people, and we’re sure that the Gosforth café will be just as successful.”

For more information about Olivia’s visit www.oliviasbakeryandcafe.co.uk and follow @oliviasartisan on twitter.

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