A YORK baker has won an award in the first Tiptree World Bread Awards, presented to him by the man who taught him how to bake.

Haxby baker Phil Clayton pointed his life in a new direction five-and-a-half years ago when he decided to quit his job as an assistant manager for Virgin Megastore in York and learn to be a baker instead.

His first step on this floury road to a new life was to attend a baking course run by the acclaimed baker and food writer Andrew Whitley.

“I attended a Bread Matters course led by Andrew Whitley and it was lovely that he was presenting me with this award,” said Phil, who is known as the Haxby Baker. “And what was especially exciting is that this was an award in the Real Bread category, and that’s what we are all about.”

Phil won the award for his Yorkshire Mill loaf. “It’s made from 100 per cent Yorkshire flour and without any additives,” said Phil.

He also earned a gold standard award in the world bread category for his pain au levain, a French-style sourdough loaf.

The awards were presented at a harvest supper-style awards ceremony at St John’s Church, Hyde Park, London.

Mr Whitley, of the Real Bread Campaign, said he was delighted to hand the trophy for the Real Bread category to Phil, who runs the Haxby Bakehouse with his wife.

“The competition was exceptional,” said Stephen Hallam, master baker and managing director of Dickinson & Morris and chair of the judges.

Other judges on the panels included Edd Kimber, winner of the Great British Bake Off, and the baker Charles Geary, also known as Mr Bread.

“We had very exacting criteria for judging, and every loaf was judged anonymously,” said Mr Hallam.

Phil beat off competition from loaves sent in from around the United Kingdom to take the Real Bread crown which conformed to the exacting standards of the Real Bread Campaign.

Some loaves were even flown from Cornwall and hand-delivered on the morning of the judging at the Worshipful Company of Bakers.