Baker is no longer in knead of early starts

A Whitley Bay baker is preparing to hang up his oven gloves for the final time after nearly 60 years in the industry.

Peter Finlay started off as a fresh-faced 15-year-old when his father gave him a try in Cater’s Bakery, in Park View, that he had just purchased.

And 59 years later, Peter is preparing to head off into retirement with just one final thing left to do – find someone to buy the bakery.

The bakery – which sells fresh bread, cakes, pastries, sandwiches and pies – is one of the oldest businesses in Whitley Bay, being founded by Ernest Carter in 1933 and sold to the Finlay family in 1954.

Peter, 74, said: “I left school at 15 and went straight into the bakery. When my father bought it, he had the adjoining decorating business and planned to extend into Carter’s.

“But instead he gave me a chance in the bakery. I was going to be a painter and decorator but I became a baker and haven’t looked back.”

He added: “I haven’t any plans for my retirement, I just want to keep active.

“It would be nice for Whitley Bay if we could find someone to buy the bakery, and it would be nice for the bakers, some of whom have been here for 40 years.”