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Our Story

Who We Are

Cullys Craft Bakery is a family run business that was established in 1953 and the craft of traditional baking has since been passed down through three generations.

The Beginning - 1953

Cullys Craft Bakery was established in 1953 by Michael Cully in Arva, Co. Cavan.

Michaels father, TF Cully, was a wholesale grocer supplying a range of commodities such as butter, cheese, bread and tobacco to the regional country stores. Michael was an agent for Spicers Bakery in Co. Meath, where the bread was brought by train in wicker baskets to Arva Road Station, Cornafean and from there, it was transported to Cullys in Arva by pony and trap.

Cullys Bakery Opens

Michael, seeing that bread was the biggest seller, decided that he would open his own bakery so he built Cullys Bakery next door to the family grocer business on Main St., Arva, creating new industry and employment in the area. Among the salesmen at the time was Joe Stafford, 3 times All Irelands winner with Cavan. It was in 1953, that Michael opened the doors of Cullys Bakery and the now-famous Cullys Plain Batch Loaf was born!

Oven-baked Produce

Plain unsliced batch bread, white and brown pans, bracks, brown sodas, white sodas, fruit sodas and Vienna rolls were the main product at the time, most of which continue to be baked to this day at Cullys Craft Bakery. All the bread was unsliced at the time and wrapped by hand with sheets of cellophane and sealed with tape. 

The ovens at that time were heated by coke, which is a dull, black byproduct of coal that burns hotter and cleaner. The coke burners had to be topped up regularly as the ovens were kept running constantly due to the time it took to heat them up and the bakery only closed on Sundays so it made more sense to always leave the burners smouldering. This topping up of fuel was a task in which Michaels nephews delighted in helping out with for a few bob at the weekends or during the Christmas holidays!  

The Mid 60s

In the mid ’60s, Michael was able to introduce oil burners on timers to alleviate this problem.

When Michael passed away in 1969, his wife Kathleen, assumed the responsibilities of managing the bakery. It was during this time that Michael & Kathleen’s nephews, Barney Cully and John Ryan, joined the team at Cullys Bakery and began learning the business.

When Kathleen retired, it was a natural succession that Barney took over the running of the business.

New bakery

After many successful years growing the business and having outgrown the original premises on Main St., Arva, the decision was made in 2007 to relocate to a new purpose-built bakery just outside of the town on the Cavan Road. The new facility brought continued success using the traditional baking methods long associated with Cullys Craft Bakery.

While always involved in the bakery, it was in 2008 when Barneys son Brían, after completing a Bachelor of Science degree in Bakery & Pastry Arts Technology & Management in The National Bakery School DIT, joined the business in a full-time capacity. 

The Present day

With Barney taking a step towards retirement in recent years, Brían is now the third generation of the Cully family to assume the role of Managing Director. Both of Barney’s daughters, Elaine and Jennifer, also work within the company – a real family recipe for success! 

Traditional Baking...
Better Tasting!

Our commitment to quality ingredients and traditional baking shines through in the taste.

Meet the Family

Cullys Craft Bakery is a family run business that was established in 1953 and the craft of traditional baking has since been passed down through three generations.

Barney Cully

The head of the family and the heart of the Bakery! Barney was recruited by his Aunty Kathleen straight from school and sent on baking placements in Dublin, to Rowans Bakery, Rathmines, where he learned how to bake confectionery and Crossguns Bakery, North Dublin, where he learned how to bake bread. When he perfected his craft of baking, Barney moved to the delivery side of the business, out in the van every day selling to the shops and strengthening the loyal relationships with our customers that are so valued to this present day.

Brían Cully

Brían completed a Bachelor of Science degree in Bakery & Pastry Arts Technology & Management in The National Bakery School DIT in 2008 and has been heading up operations in the business since. Having grown up in the bakery, it was a natural succession for him to assume the Managing Directors role in recent years. Brían’s experience and knowledge of the business are paramount and his hands-on approach ensures that every process and product is created to the highest standards.

Elaine Cully

Elaine manages the office (and Barney & Brían too!). Elaine looks after the day to day running of the business from the paperwork side and is always on the other end of the line should anyone need her.

Jennifer Cully

Jennifer is the most recent family recruit having lived overseas for a number of years but the pullback to the family business was too strong to resist. Now she enjoys working alongside the family and in all things sales, marketing, and development.