A small batch community bakehouse opens in Withington Public Hall this weekend

This will be a new venture for Lewis Loughman who has previously worked at both Gooey and Pot Kettle Black

Manchester’s baking boom is set to continue with the opening of a new artisan bakery in South Manchester.

Located in Withington Public Hall Institute, Batard is a small batch community bakehouse which will be serving ‘well good bread, bangin’ bakes & proper food’.

Pork Pies fresh out the oven. Photos by Adam Pester

Owner, Lewis, has worked with various Manchester bakeries and cafes over the years, including Pot Kettle Black and Takk.

Along with his partner, Dorothy, Lewis had been about the set up a shop in Hebden Bridge, where they used to live, selling classic sandwiches. However, in early 2020, just when they were about to open, the site flooded and so they pulled out of the lease.

Batard is operating from outside Withy Public Hall whilst lockdown restrictions are in place

Lewis then went on to work on the launch of cookie and doughnut bakery Gooey last year, before deciding to set up Batard.

On the menu at Batard will be classic sourdough loaves and other bakes. Lewis’ approach to his menu is to ‘bake by fancy and feel’ and many of the bakes will be things he grew up with like Bakewell tarts and vanilla slices, alongside croissant buns and other pastries.

Eventually, he would like to start using heritage grains and even mill their own flour on site. Lewis also wants to get as involved in the community as possible and would one day like to put on free classes for local kids to teach them how to make bread.

Lewis said: “We basically want to be as sustainable as possible, and as nutritious as possible, but approachable as well. You can alienate people, I think. I really want to try and get away from that.”

Alongside Batard in Withy Public Hall are other small food and drink businesses including Burton Road Brewery and Basilico who make Neapolitan pizza.

Batard is planning to launch fully on 20 March but they are also doing a little pop up this Sunday ahead of the opening where they will be serving a small menu including a porchetta sandwich with slow roasted & deep fried pork belly, sourdough stuffing, anchovy aioli and rocket.

Batard will be open from 10am Saturday and Sunday on a first come first serve basis until sold out. Whilst they find their feet, there’ll be no collection/preorders but that will change in a few weeks.

The other traders at Withy Hall can be found and ordered from here: goodeats.io/wphi.

To keep up to date with the latest news on Batard, give them a follow on Instagram: instagram.com/batardbread.

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