Neville Tulip, local resident and speaker for the evening at the January meeting of Acklington WI, is the baker and co-owner at The Running Fox (previously The Cheviot Café) in Felton.
He started by giving us a brief history of his life. From a very young age he watched and helped his mother who was a great pastry cook but never made bread.
It gave him the passion to cook and he says, as far as he can remember, he always wanted to be baker.
After five years in college he mainly worked in the Cumbria region until he found a lucrative position at the Dorchester in London.
However, that didn’t last long as there was no scope for his passion for artisan breads but was a superb place to hone his bakery skills in other departments.
He found a position in Switzerland and went on to learn more about his speciality of sour dough (natural) breads.
These breads are good for people who have some intolerances, ie gluten, and the process can take anything from 12 to 48 hours.
One day, out of the blue, he got a phone callfrom Chris, a lady he knew but hadn’t spoken to in a very long time, asking if he was interested in opening a café with her.
They both took over what was then called the Cheviot Café in Felton and, after listening to the local population, returned it to The Running Fox.
After long hard hours they finally opened and The Running Fox is a very successful café today.
He spoke of plans to extend and improve the range for which planning application has already been made.
Ingrid March gave the appreciation and then several of us tried some of the breads he had brought, along with cheeses supplied by Sylvia Linnett, making the pooled supper redundant.
There was very little business to go through as no newsletter and Cresswell House closed for modernisation.
The secretary had drawn up a list of events and asked those interested to put their name down during the evening.
The competition for three savoury scones was judged by Neville: 1 Moira Peden; 2 Barbara King; 3 Barbara Cock.
The next meeting is on Tuesday, February 12, at 7.15pm when the speaker will be Helen Grierson talking about glass craft.
All visitors welcome. More about our institute can be found on www.acklingtonparish.org.uk/groups/WI