When Thompson’s Bakery was established in Pit Town (near Wallsend) in 1891, conditions were very different from the streamlined high-tech methods employed today. Henry & Emma Thompson migrated from Warwickshire in England in 1880. They lived in Pit Town, where Henry worked in the mines. He did not enjoy this work, so in an effort to find an alternative source of income he built chicken coops to produce eggs. This business was not successful, but with an excess of eggs Emma started making cakes to supplement their income. This was a success within the mining community so they decided to set up a small bakery. Emma & Henry had 13 children, their son William was the bakery’s first apprentice and all the sons went into the baking business at some stage. This tradition continues today.