Keeping an independent business alive in today’s climate is very difficult and impressive to say the least. Local, traditional, family-owned independent businesses act as the cornerstone of our community. The word family applies to all of us whether it makes us think of our parents, or a very close group of friends.

Some may only know of restaurants that are owned by families, so with that being said here are a few alternative family run businesses for you to have a look at…


Malcolm Michaels


Malcolm Michaels is a modern take on a traditional butchery. Originally founded in 1993 by Uncle and Nephew, in just 25 years they have gone from a small unit on Butchers Row to owning a 100ft store front which holds a bountiful amount of varied food from their extensive selections of meat, all of which is locally sourced in Yorkshire. 

Their small team of nine people, and their interactions between each other, are reminiscent of how you would imagine a family to be. They offer a perfect balance between professionalism and banter creating a friendly, forthcoming and welcoming environment that their customers clearly love.

The Sunshine Bakery


The Sunshine Bakery is a quaint, small family-owned independent business that specialises in selling freshly baked goods to their customers at reasonable prices. They have a selection of delightful dishes for their customers to try out, all of which are locally sourced. They also offer the utmost professional and friendliest customer service available, something that is not hard to come by in businesses owned by families. 

This family-run business knows how to make you feel exactly at home, because the atmosphere of the bakery truly captures that homely feeling. Compared to the monotonous chains of bakeries that are available, The Sunshine Bakery truly does brighten your day. 


R.K. Harris & Sons


For R.K. Harris & Sons, family is essentially already in the name. The business was established in 1972 by two brothers Raymond and Keith Harris, the name comes from the two brothers’ father Raymond Kenneth Harris. This fruiterer and greengrocer specialises in supplying exceptional produce to businesses including schools, hotels, care homes, nurseries, and sandwich bars. 

Their produce is sourced carefully from around the world and they aim to please every single one of their customers. They also provide a selection of specialty goods which include pesto, olives, chopped tomatoes, parma ham and peeled garlic.


Tarbett’s Fishmongers


Started by Liam Tarbott after leaving university, in the beginning Tarbett’s started as a small stall on the farmers market on Briggate only selling fresh cooked shellfish and oysters to the Sunday shoppers of Leeds with his partner Caity. He has since grown the business exponentially into a family affair, now owning three locations across Leeds.

There’s nothing fishy about this Ilkley fishmongers. They offer the best prices to their customers, whom of which they treat with the utmost respect and approach them with a friendly and welcoming attitude. They pride themselves on being an independent family-owned fish shop in a small market town.

Mortens Hardware Store


Mortens Hardware Store started as a small unit in a Victorian building in 1937. Interestingly enough, the founder of Mortens, Ralph Morten, served in WW2 in the Royal Engineers meaning his wife Barbara Morten had to keep the shop going with the help of her sister. When Ralph Morten returned to Ilkley, he focused all of his energy on building up his hardware business.

They have since taken over the entire ground floor and sell a plethora of DIY items. Mortens is proudly one of the last few traditional hardware stores in the UK. Despite the traditional look of the building Mortens is always looking to the future to offer their customers the latest tools that are available. 


Accent Clothing


Accent Clothing offers an extensive range of high quality, designer clothing. This family-owned independent business has been around for over 30 years and sell their clothing in store and online. Accent Clothing’s aim is to treat every single one of their customers as a friend and this sales philosophy has not changed since they first established their store in 1984. 

They have seen families grow and have grown with them. In an ideal world, Accent Clothing wants to form a long-term relationship with their customer, giving it a more personal, friendly environment compared to the impersonal approach most clothing store chains take.


Regardless of what family is to you, the word makes us feel at home. Which is why it’s always a much more personal and genuine experience when visiting an independent family-owned business.