Welcome to Belinda’s, a cherished family-owned bakery nestled on the outskirts of the New Forest. Our journey began in 1983 when Peter Ellis, a true artisan of the baking craft, along with his wife Ruth, embarked on a culinary adventure that has been a labour of love for both them and their children ever since.
Peter’s passion for the art of baking was ignited at the age of 15 when he took his first steps into the world of baking, leaving school to work for a family-run bakery in Essex. Despite a detour into the Merchant Navy, where he circumnavigated the globe twice, Peter’s heart remained firmly in the bakery. Upon his return, he honed his skills at Southampton Bakery College, where his dedication earned him the title of Top Student for three consecutive years. Peter’s quest for excellence then led him to the prestigious National Bakery School, now known as London South Bank University. It was during this time that he found a partner for life in Ruth, and they were married in 1975.
Over the next six years, Peter’s journey in the baking world took him through various bakeries in Bristol and Somerset, each experience enriching his expertise. Eventually, he joined the Tesco Team of Bakers in Bristol, but his dreams were set on something more. In 1981, he took a leap of faith and opened his first bakery, The Oven Door of Kingswood in Bristol. Two years later, Peter and Ruth relocated to Ringwood, where the beloved Belinda’s Bakery- along with four children- was born. This humble beginning laid the foundation for more bakery shops. Locations in Fordingbridge, Salisbury, Poole, Christchurch, Verwood, and Ferndown each contributed to the legacy of Belinda’s.
Peter’s commitment extends beyond the bakery’s ovens. He has played an active role in the local community, with the Ringwood High Street shop (closed in 2008) serving as a hub for youth with a coffee bar that still thrives today in the old Tennis Club House on Carvers playing field. His interests range from fishing to football, and he has run ‘play-to-train’ football sessions for young people over the years. Peter’s active role in the Methodist Church is a testament to his dedication to community, and he has mentored numerous apprentices, some of whom have gone on to open their own successful bakeries.
As we enter our third decade of serving Ringwood and its surrounding communities, Peter, Ruth, and their family continue to move Belinda’s Bakery forward. They remain committed to preserving the time-honoured artistry and craftsmanship of traditional baking, while also introducing exciting new offerings. Belinda’s now proudly presents a range of Sourdough and Speciality breads, as well as a delightful Pizza night to delight our local patrons on weekends.
Peter’s unwavering passion for the world of baking still burns brightly, infusing each loaf and treat from Belinda’s Bakery with a sense of tradition and dedication that spans generations. Thank you for being a part of our story, and we look forward to many more years of serving you with the finest baked goods and warm, heartfelt hospitality.