Haighs History

The history of Haighs (Guiseley) Limited, a family bakery since 1950.
1945
The First Bake House
The first bakehouse in Bradford was opened by Grandpa Herbert Haigh.
1945
1950
Five Shops
After World War II, Jack and Tony Haigh (sons of Herbert) are now running five shops.
1950
1960's
Move to Otley
The central bakery in Otley opened. New technology began changing the ways of manufacture: electric ovens and rotating pie blockers were among new innovations.
1960's
1971
Young Adam
Jack and wife Barbara continued to run the business. Their son, an 8-year-old Adam, began helping: 20p/hour for operating the dough divider! (including a 4am start!!)
1971
1973
Time to Downsize
Jack was diagnosed with lung cancer so a decision to downsize was made; 4 shops were kept and the ‘Gold Medal’ site in Otley was turned into a bakehouse for bread and rolls.
1973
1978
Barbara
Jack passed away - Babara carried on with young Adam and sister Alison helping more and more.
1978
1984
New Investment
After attaining a Masters degree in economics, Adam joined the business full time. Investing in new, modern machinery and introducing new techniques and technologies, more varieties and better products were available.
1984
1986
Guiseley Refit
A refurbishment of the Guiseley shop leads to a more modern business, increasing the sales by 100%.
1986
1987
Yeadon & Otley Refit
After the success of the Guiseley refurbishment, Otley and Yeadon were modernised, attaining the same market increase.
1987
1988-89
Limited Company
Sadly, Barbara passed away. Adam is now running the business. The bigger sales needed a bigger bakery. Guiseley bakery was established. The business is now a Limited Company.
1988-89
1990's
Expansion
More expansion; Shipley and Baildon shops open.
1990's
2000's
Wholesale Focus
High St shopping habits began to change so Adam decides wholesale is now the way forward. The shops were sold and more investment passed to the wholesale side of the business.
2000's
2010's
Inward Investment
New investment meant more efficient ovens and provers. The confectionery room is refurbished. New staff are trained and become part of the Haighs family. The apprenticeship scheme is put into operation.
2010's
2020
Global Pandemic
COVID changes the world. 90% of business is lost overnight as the country enters lockdown. As one door closes another opens: shortages of flour, bread and people looking for home hobbies; opens up the online home delivery service for the local area.
A growing trend turned into a national opportunity to supply the nation. More investment was made to support this. The e-shop was created and national delivery was born.
2020
2022
Today
Haighs continue to explore new business opportunities and keep abreast of an ever-changing world. The aim is still the same from those early days of Grandpa Herbert: To supply the best quality produce at the best price.
2022