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This family-owned bakery company wanted to keep their employees safe and improve knowledge and productivity throughout the business.


Roberts Bakery are committed to keeping their employees safe and recognised the need to improve the number of safety incidents in the organisation. There were questions over the engagement of staff with health and safety, and the quality of risk assessments and accident investigations. It was some time since training was delivered and the company was keen to get employees to take more ownership of their health and safety responsibilities.

The Senior Leadership Team took the decision to further invest in the health and safety of its employees and reached out to Make UK to help.

Martin Bratherton, Head of HSE at Roberts Bakery, had worked with Make UK in a previous role. He knew of their reputation and experience, and was confident that they would get the message across effectively:


Empowering our leaders to manage risk is a significant focus area for Roberts Bakery. We wanted to build on existing knowledge of the moral, legal and financial reasons for managing health and safety throughout the Senior Leadership Team and Board members. A consistent message was required through the training program and we thought Make UK would be a great partner to help us achieve this - with their industry knowledge they could really bring the topic to life.
Martin Bratherton Head of HSE, Roberts Bakery


Firstly, Make UK worked closely with Roberts Bakery to thoroughly understand the current position, requirements and desired outputs. From that, they produced a training and awareness programme based on providing supervisors and managers with the tools they needed to recognise and challenge actions and behaviours from staff, with equal emphasis on spotting and recognising positive actions.

The IOSH Managing Safely course fitted perfectly. It’s designed to provide supervisors and managers with the knowledge and tools to manage health, safety and environmental risks in the workplace and comply with HSE legislation. Make UK tailored the course to bring the content to life, including Robert’s existing policies, risk assessments and accident investigation processes, and examples of real-life incidents.

The course was delivered to over 30 staff members face to face at their Northwich site. They were keen that the scheduling worked around them, so the three-day course was run one-day per week over a three-week period. All the delegates passed with flying colours, with one person even achieving full marks. Feedback from staff who went on the course was very positive:

I really enjoyed the course. The content we covered was excellent, with all the relevant information included but broken down into manageable chunks. The tutor was knowledgeable and friendly, talking though in real life scenarios and situations to bring the content to life. The course has given me the skills I need to drive and understand health and safety in my workplace
Joshua Pulford Shift Manager, Roberts Bakery

The project didn’t stop there. The Senior Leadership Team and Board members recognised they had an important part to play and took IOSH Safety for Senior Executives and Directors. This course is specifically designed for senior leaders and ensures those with ultimate responsibility for the business and its actions know their legal responsibilities so that the workforce and public are safe from harm:

Commitment to health and safety starts at the top of the organisation. It is imperative for our leadership team to provide support, guidance, and direction on the most important activity within our business. The wellbeing of all our colleagues will always be our primary focus, hence it was a very positive decision and experience to attend the IOSH Safety for Senior Executives and Directors Course. This also clearly demonstrated the commitment of both the Senior Leadership Team and Board members towards striving to make our company a safe place to work.
Anil Ahir Operations Manager, Roberts Bakery


Roberts Bakery are already starting to see benefits across the business:

  • A reduction in lost time incidents, meaning less time lost and greater productivity.
  • There has been an increase in praising and challenging behaviours through observation reporting.
  • Employees are much more engaged with health and safety and understand the fundamental reasons why we manage and how it can benefit the business.
  • Improved synergy between the Senior Leadership Team and Managers working on the shop floor.
  • Risk assessments have become a focus area and people feel empowered to manage risk within their area of responsibility.
We focused on IOSH training throughout 2021 and managing risk remained a talking point for an increased number of people throughout our business. Risk assessment review is a key priority next year and this increase of knowledge will be a great help to our people when leading or being involved in reviewing these assessments and finding the suitable solutions or controls required.
Martin Bratherton Head of HSE, Roberts Bakery

About the company

Roberts Bakery is a leading manufacturer of premium bakery products, with bakeries situated in Northwich, Cheshire & Ilkeston Derbyshire. Starting in 1887, the company has grown considerably over its distinguished history and now employs over 800 people. The company has a strong sense of community and investment in its staff.

The commitment from Leaders, Managers and Supervisors was recognised in a presentation from Andrew Ward Health, Safety and Sustainability Director of Make UK to Mark Cooper Transformation Director of Roberts Bakery:

Group photo of delegates after receiving their IOSH Managing Safely Certificates: 


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Make UK can help you

Make UK have been providing health and safety training to a range of different businesses for decades and deliver more than 10,000 training days per year. All tutors are at CMIOSH or CFIOSH and have at least 10 years’ experience running IOSH courses.