Sourdough, ceramics and sustainability in Stockport from the team behind Where The Light Gets In

It’s been a long time coming, but Yellowhammer is finally here. The bakery and ceramics studio from the team behind Stockport’s Where the Light Gets In will open to the public on Saturday 14 May with a morning of freshly-baked goods, coffee and an open pottery studio. Bringing the sustainable approach of the Green Michelin-starred restaurant to the art of sourdough and ceramics.

Things are designed to move and evolve as the offering changes and grows.

Named after the distinctive call of a brightly-coloured woodland songbird that apparently sounds like it is singing “a little bit of bread and no cheeeeeese”, Yellowhammer will specialise in simple baked goods and sourdough bread.

And before you ask (contrary to original press release), “It’s not a fucking pizzeria,” says Sam Buckley. 

The Striking Green Frontage Of Yellowhammer In Stockport
The green frontage of Yellowhammer on Stockport's Lower Hillgate Image: Confidentials

A local and sustainable ethos

“Just like the restaurant [Where The Light Gets In] is all about where the food comes from, the bakery is going to have the same ethos.” Says Rosie Wilkes co-founder of the new Stockport shop which is housed behind a charming green shopfront on Stockport’s Lower Hillgate.

Rosie has been working on recipes using a diverse selection of organic grains all sourced from the UK. But in time, she hopes the product will be even more hyper-local.

“We really want to encourage more people to grow in the North West. There’s a lot of people growing grain organically around here, mostly in Yorkshire and Northumbria. Not a million miles away but it would be nice to see more people doing it in Lancashire and Cheshire.”

Sam Buckley Pours Coffee In Yellowhammer Stockport
Sam Buckley pours one out for the parched press in a selection of potter Joe Hartley's creations Image: Confidentials

As we reported back in July last year, all elements of the venue will “work in synergy” - the ceramics made by potter Joe Hartley will be used in the kitchen and for service as well as being available to buy. There will also be pottery workshops with a focus on thoughtful sourcing of materials and low-tech production methods.

Doorknobs Made By Potter And Creative Joe Hartley For Yellowhammer Stockport
Doorknobs and other small opbjects created by Joe Hartley for Yellowhammer Image: Confidentials

History in the walls

Rosie and Sam showed the Confidentials team around the site in February this year and explained that they are trying to stay true to many of the building's original features.

“We’re trying to keep it as low-key as possible and keep as much of the bones of the old building as we can," says Rosie.

“It’s been a lot of different things. Most recently it was The Tudor Café. It’s been a Malaysian restaurant. It’s been a cake shop before. It might have been a butcher as well.” 

When we walk around the space just days before opening, I remark that the space is still very stripped back. 

Counters On Wheels At Yellowhammer Stockport
The space at Yellowhammer is completely customisable with counters on wheels Image: Confidentials

“We’re not going to be all-singing, all-dancing here,” Sam reminds me, “We probably never will be. But that’s the whole point isn’t it?”

They explain that Yellowhammer will be very much a moving feast. "The whole thing is on wheels," Sam tells us as he gestures toward the custom-built work surfaces. 

Things are designed to move and evolve as the offering changes and grows. "We realised that we needed door knobs the other day so Joe had to make some." Says Sam.

Rosie With Her Sourdough Baked At Yellowhammer In Stockport
Baker Rosie Wilkes with a fresh sourdough, straight out of the oven Image: Confidentials

Your daily bread

Everything about Yellowhammer is stripped back. Coffee from Hasbean roastery will be available as filter or espresso with an achingly small menu. Think nothing but espressos, cortados and flat whites. 

The food offering will revolve around Rosie's sourdough bakes. Pop in for a whole loaf, a half loaf, or even a quarter. This idea, the team hopes, will discourage food waste. While a revolving offering of sandwiches, cheese and possibly ferments, sweet treats and natural wine are also on the roster. 

Items may filter down from Where The Light Gets In and vice versa. Sam speaks a lot about the circular economy between the two.

Rosie Wilkes Slicing Bread At Yellowhammer In Stockport
Rosies shares her latest bake at Yellowhammer Image: Confidentials

Yellowhammer is very much built out of a love for the local community. Pottery workshops, ever-changing chef residencies and a place to catch up with friends before and after work are all in the pipeline for the space. 

Yellowhammer will open for its "soft-lanch" on Saturday 14 May at 11am. Visitors will have the opportunity to throw some pottery in the back with Joe and sample the coffee, bakes and wine on offer.

Going forward it will open Wednesday - Friday 10am - 6pm and Saturday 11am until everything sells out.

Yellowhammer 15 Lower Hillgate, Stockport SK1 1JQ

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