Town’s family centre to open bakery

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Pontefract Family Centre will open up its own bakery and cafe later this year, after receiving more than £5,000 in funding.

The Harropwell Lane centre, was set up in 1982 and provides activities for adults with learning disabilities.

Now, thanks to funding from the Coalfields Community Grants programme and Barclays bank, a new artisan bakery and cafe is being launched at the centre.

The centre will, with support from a master baker and assistant, will sell its range at Pontefract market on Wednesday and Saturday under the brand name Real Bread Company.

John Hughes, the centre’s chairman, said: “Most of the people who attend the centre have never had a job as they don’t meet the requirements of the average employer.

“At the bakery we can change that and we will be in a position to teach these individuals life skills in a real work setting.”

The centre organises special events and day trips for people across the area, as well as other activities including drama, sport, literacy, cooking, gardening, art and photography.

Mr Hughes added: “The first step is to get the artisan bakery up and running to encourage people to come along and taste our delicious products.

“There will be everything from freshly baked breads, to cakes, scones and pastries, which we will be selling at the market.

“We will then move on to plans which include the opening of a cafe, again to be staffed by those attending the centre.

“We have very exciting and ambitious plans for the centre and can’t wait to get to start.”

Profits raised from the new cafe would be used to fund the charity, which at the moment relies on government funding and charitable donations.