Derbyshire baker David Yates has become a liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Bakers, one of the oldest guilds in the City of London.
Mr Yates, proprietor of Luke Evans Bakery based in Riddings, near Alfreton, was admitted to the livery during the company’s July Court meeting at its headquarters in Harp Lane, just 200 yards from London’s Tower Bridge, right in the heart of the City.
He said: “I feel very privileged to have been accepted as a liveryman in this distinguished and ancient London livery, and shall endeavour to do my utmost to embrace and respect all the wonderful traditions and customs of the company, and to offer my support in any way that the Master, Clerk and the Court see fit.
“The sense of history is immense, in an institution that can trace its origins back over 800 years, yet at the same time the Worshipful Company of Bakers is at the forefront of promoting education within the bakery industry, as well as supporting many other charitable activities.
“I first became a freeman of the Worshipful Company of Bakers last year, and then proceeded to become a Freeman of the City of London which in turn entitles you to become a full liveryman of your chosen livery company.“
The Company of Bakers has more than 350 members and many are master bakers or work in allied trades. It is one of the oldest City of London liveries, or trade guilds, with records showing bakers making payments to Henry II as early as 1155.
Today, in a bid to promote education, the company provides scholarships and prizes for young people in the baking industry and is committed to upholding the traditions and history of baking.
Mr Yates was in fine company, when he was admitted as a liveryman, alongside City of London solicitor Polly Joseph, whose father Rex Joseph is a past master of the company.
Luke Evans Bakery supplies around 300 wholesale and trade customers in Derbyshire, East Staffordshire, and Nottinghamshire including shops, schools and delis, as well as Pride Park – the home of Derby County.
Set up in 1804 the bakery can call on eight generations of Evans family baking experience. Mr Yates’ daughter Sarah, 19, joined the business last year. Craft bakers work a shift pattern across 24 hours a day at its base in Green Hill Lane, Riddings, producing breads, cakes and savoury products.