The Thoughtful Bread Company is aiming to fund its expansion plans through an online investment scheme - Crowdcube.

The bakery is looking for £55k - having secured £6,000 so far - for a 20% share of the business. The money would be used to open its first bakery shop and school in Bath.

Crowdcube is designed to help startup and growing businesses raise business finance by letting people invest via its equity crowdfunding platform.

Investors are invited to put in between £500 and £5,000. In return they will own a share in the bakery, and will also get some one of rewards such as places on its bakery courses, and a spot on the founders’ wall, planned for the bakery shop and school.

Duncan Glendinning, founder, The Thoughtful Bread Company, said: “This is a hugely exciting next step for us. The funding mechanism we have turned to will allow us to offer the local community to own a small share in the company.

“Whilst we have always been supportive of, and supported by the community through our bartering scheme, charity support and more, it has always been privately owned and this is all about to change”

The bakery currently supplies its breads to local farm shops and restaurants.