The Good Loaf Community Interest Company has been granted £386,487 of National Lottery funding to employ female ex-offenders.

The Northampton community bakery project will operate as a social enterprise, and will employ and train up beneficiaries to reduce re-offending.

The bakery will sell bread products to local people and businesses, and is said to be the first ‘artisan bakery’ in the town.

Debbie Galton, social enterprise development manager, C2C Charitable Trust said: “This Big Lottery Fund grant will enable us to launch The Good Loaf CIC, an innovative bakery social enterprise that will provide training and employment opportunities to female ex-offenders in Northampton.

“The bakery will support up to 100 vulnerable women each year and the new skills and experience they gain whilst on placement will help to reduce re-offending rates and increase employability. We are very excited to start working on the launch, which would not have been possible without this Reaching Communities grant.”

The project will link with Northampton Food Bank to deliver free courses to the attendees

The bakery will also offer 25 voluntary roles for others in the community.

Tim Davies-Pugh, Big Lottery Fund deputy director, said: “Reaching Communities grants are for projects that help people and communities most in need and the Good Loaf CIC is a great example of a community project that will have far-reaching positive effects on individuals and their community.

“An artisan community bakery is a fabulous project, and I look forward to possibly sampling the baked goods one day.