It's five years ago this week since we reported on the closure of a bakery with connections to some famous faces.

A bakery owner has spoken of his sadness at closing down his family business going back 65 years.

Christopher Tomkins has called time on Kistrucks Bakery in South Woodford after a quarter of a century running the business he took over from his late father Michael.

Seven staff working at the branch have been made redundant. The George Lane bakery, open since 1978, will close at the end of the week.

Mr Tomkins, 62, said the business was a part of his life and family history.

He said: “It’s very bad for me because it’s in my DNA. I used to cycle to help my father and grease all the tins when I was 14. I went to national bakery school and did 18 months in France on a placement. I’m personally very upset about that.

“It’s difficult but the people who survive will be artisans with a personal service. Running chains is very difficult and must be done on face-to-face sales where there is a special relationship.”

The shop has connections with famous faces past and present.

Michael made Winston Churchill’s 80th birthday cake and took it to Downing Street himself.

Mel Giedroyc, former co-presenter of BBC’s Great British Bake Off, came to the shop five years ago to make cakes.

Mr Tomkins blamed “the perfect high street storm” for his business’s predicament.

He said: “We had the perfect high street storm – a worried, price-conscious public, commodities like butter have gone up, the living wage has been introduced, footfall has gone down, Brexit and the devaluation of the pound as a result, and rates have gone up. We make handmade products and it’s difficult for us to compete.

“The world is very diverse. There’s less footfall because of internet sales.

“People are holding back. This isn’t just us – it’s all over London and the south east. It is extremely difficult but we’ve had to make this decision because I can’t see it getting better.

“We’re not quite in the trendy enough area- South Woodford isn’t quite into Wanstead territory in the amenities side of things. Wanstead has a Victoria Park feel to it.

“We tried to keep a middle line in our sales and tried individual artisan loaves but historically we serve a lot of workmen but they’ve changed their purchasing habits.”

The 62-year-old was forced to shut the Chigwell branch a year ago for the same reasons, taking the total number of redundant staff up to 23.

Kistrucks Bakeries’ wholesale activities will continue.