Inverurie baker receives special award

George Ross, chairman of Inverurie craft baker JG Ross, with his award along with Ian Dobbie, managing director of sponsors Delifrance, and  Caudia Winkleman
George Ross, chairman of Inverurie craft baker JG Ross, with his award along with Ian Dobbie, managing director of sponsors Delifrance, and Caudia Winkleman

An Inverurie baker has won one of the industry’s top awards.

George Ross, chairman of bakers JG Ross, has been honoured for his outstanding contribution to the trade at its equivalent of the Oscars.

Mr Ross, who is the only person to have twice become president of Scottish Bakers, received a special award at the Baking Industry Awards 2015 in London.

More than 800 guests at the glittering event heard that he began work in the baking industry at 10, working before and after school, and at weekends.

At 15, he did a four-year local apprenticeship, then borrowed money to buy his own, small £5000 bakery.

The awards sponsors managing director Ian Dobbie told the audience at the Park Lane Hilton: “His drive to succeed was so strong that he worked 18-20 hours a day and, on one occasion, fell asleep at the hotplate and burnt both arms. He simply had them bandaged by his wife, Betty, and carried on working.

“The business flourished and now boasts one of the best, purpose-built, craft bakeries in Scotland, employs 310 people and turns over £11m serving its own chain of retail shops and large wholesale network.

“Outside baking, he actively supported charities and Rotary Club. He’s organised entertainment for the elderly and a WAGS dinner which raised £16,000 for charity, and he’s been honoured with a Rotary ‘Fellowship’.”

Now in their 28th year, the annual Baking Industry Awards are the premier event in the UK bakery calendar and have been recognising industry excellence since 1987. Honours are awarded across 11 categories including Speciality Bread Product, Celebration Cake Business and Bakery Manufacturer of the Year.