Whalley teenager is finals of Baker of Year awards

Skilled Baker: 17-year-old James Walton with a selection of his artisan breads. (s)
Skilled Baker: 17-year-old James Walton with a selection of his artisan breads. (s)

Whalley-based artisan bread maker James Walton has made it to the top three in the national Baker of the Year Awards.

James (17) works in the bakery section at Amy’s Delicatessen, Whalley, and also runs his own business at Sunday markets, Dough 2b Different.

No stranger to fine food accolades, James has already scooped two industry awards for his maple and pecan bread and English sour dough, judged recently by local top chef, Nigel Haworth.

James said: “After leaving school, I decided to really try and make a go of my bakery business. I want to show people that there are better options than just buying what I class as “supermarket stodge” and I’m passionate about reviving the art of artisan bread making.”

Encouraged by his parents, who are both chefs, James took up baking at the age of eight, spending most weekends in the kitchen trying out new recipes he had come up with.

James is now looking forward to the awards ceremony at the Hilton Hotel in London, on September 7th, where the winner of the prestigious title will be announced.