Reimagine your work: Leeds Bread Co‑op

"Imagine having a boss?!" Watch an inspiring story about how an artisan bakery and workers co‑op have 'reimagined' work.

In Leeds, a worker owned artisan bakery, Leeds Bread Co‑op, has been working with The Hive to put its expansion plans in place so it can extend the number of customers and grow the number of employees.

Zig, one of the co-owners of Leeds Bread Co‑op, said:

“I didn’t think I’d ever own my own business. There was so much support when we started out. It is eminently possible if you really are motivated. It’s hard work but it’s very rewarding.

“The one thing that blows me away is that there was nothing there to start with. It was a chance encounter and conversation. And so many years later you have generated, from absolutely nothing, livelihoods for 16 people, a product that we’re all proud of, and that didn’t exist in 2012.”

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The video features Leeds Bread Co‑op. Brought to you by Co‑operatives UK in partnership with The Co‑operative Bank. Captured by Blake House Filmmakers Co‑operative, who also received support from The Hive

More about Leeds Bread Co‑op

Leeds Bread Co‑op started in 2012, with a vision of making real bread accessible, in a socially and environmentally responsible way, to the local community and beyond. They have achieved so much so quickly – doing “little marketing” as word of mouth has done the work in promoting their ethos and great bread!

As a result of their success, they soon reached a production limit in their current premises. Ahead of a move to new premises and expanding their business, they applied to The Hive for one-to-one advice around strategic planning.

Zig from Leeds Bread Co‑op:

“We had been reactive, and that had worked well for our first few years of trading, but we wanted to grow in a proactive way that benefits co‑op members and employees, and also our local community and customers.”

“[By accessing support from The Hive] we were able to create long term budgeting plans to have a much clearer insight into the health, productivity and potential direction of our co‑op.”

Find out more

Leeds Bread Co‑op: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Groups and co‑operatives can apply for support throughout the year. Find out more and apply today at:

Hear from other groups and co‑ops who have received support from The Hive.

Written by Leila O'Sullivan
Updated: 01/03/2017