Ten months after she opened her first cake shop in Newport, baker Beth Sims spoke to NICHOLAS THOMAS about her firm’s extraordinary early successes

BETH’S Bakes Newport, on the city’s Church Road, has only been open for 10 months, but has already become quite the sensation.

It isn’t uncommon to find queues of hungry customers waiting patiently and excitedly outside the store each morning.

South Wales Argus:

And the business’ social media operation has really taken off – the staff recently celebrated reaching 25,000 followers on Instagram.

South Wales Argus:

Owner Beth Sims, who taught herself how to bake, spoke to the South Wales Argus this week about her company’s meteoric rise from small beginnings.

“We’re crazy busy at the moment, with lots of things on,” she said.

“We opened back at the beginning of April 2018, and before that I worked from home, baking and selling cakes.”

“It’s been a hit, with big queues when we open at 11am.

South Wales Argus:

“For example, today (Thursday) we had sold out within an hour.

Miss Sims estimates about 100 customers had turned up that morning.

She said the shop’s brownies and blondies were the biggest hits with drop-in customers.

But the company also does a roaring trade online, collecting orders from all over the UK which are then delivered by mail.

The high demand for the shop’s products means things can be very busy in the shop’s small kitchen, which Miss Sims said was always running “at capacity”.

Currently, the business opens from Wednesday to Saturday each week, and Miss Sims and her four staff always have a busy morning as they prepare for the crowds of eager customers.

South Wales Argus:

“We open at 11am but we start baking much earlier,” she said.

Requests for larger or special orders, for things like celebration cakes, are only available by pre-ordering.

There is currently a three-month advance on celebration cake pre-orders.

As well as sending boxed deliveries to all corners of the country, there are plenty of Beth’s Bakes fans who make the pilgrimage to Newport to visit their favourite cake shop.

The company’s social media pages are full of rave reviews and compliments from satisfied customers.

Recently, Miss Sims said a couple from Barry had visited the shop to collect two matching “drip cakes” for their twins’ birthday party, and there are plenty of comments online from mail-order customers who live further afield.

South Wales Argus:

But despite the broad geographical appeal of Beth’s Bakes, Miss Sims said she had also built close ties with local businesses.

Her company makes bespoke cake toppers for local bakers, each displaying a personalised message.

And the company also sells cakes through a selection of local coffee shops.

“We deliver to local cafes around Newport,” Miss Sims said, listing The Riverfront, The Vanilla Pod Coffee Bar, Kettle Café, and Cabin Cwtch.

She said Beth’s Bakes’ cakes were also being sold in Brew Coffee House, Risca; and The Galley in Penarth.

“It’s been really good to push out of Newport, and we’re looking to expand the business this year,” she said.

She added that Beth’s Bakes would soon celebrate its first birthday.

And while she didn’t give away too many details about the party planned for April 6, one thing is for sure – the birthday cake will be out of this world.