AN Altrincham businesswoman has been creative to cook up some success during the coronavirus pandemic.

Hayley Hadfield opened her dream business 'Off The Wheaten Track' cafe in April 2019 and had been building up a successful trade.

Coeliacs and people requiring a gluten free diet were travelling for miles to sit down for a stress-free meal, prepared in an entirely gluten-free kitchen.

The 49-year-old knew only too well that being coeliac, and requiring gluten-free food, was an autoimmune disease and not a lifestyle choice.

The whole premise of her business was based on the diagnosis her husband, Dave, received in 2007.

Having been a fit and healthy Commercial Manager in the pharmaceuticals sector, Dave started to display the classic symptoms associated with being a coeliac - stomach cramps, weight loss and lethargy.

An intolerance to bread, pasta, cereals and biscuits were identified through a series of blood and allergy tests and a whole new way of eating was required. Having had a passion for cooking and baking since primary school, Hayley, then a relocation manager for the BBC, swung into action.

She began experimenting with ingredients and recipes to find tasty, wholesome food that both she and Dave could enjoy and that he could tolerate.

Coeliac is an autoimmune condition where the immune system mistakes healthy cells and substances for harmful ones and produces antibodies to fight them off.

12 years on, Hayley opened her own business on Oxford Road in the town.

The pandemic put a halt to the burgeoning cafe business as Hayley was forced to close the doors and then shield for the first fortnight at home.

She got her creative juices flowing baking on alternate days using ingredients from her 150 strong product range.

Pies, pastries and picnic hampers were all on the menu as Hayley looked at creative ways to keep the business she had worked so hard to build, and stay afloat.

She then drove and delivered orders herself and also re-opened her premises as a deli/mini market and manages this alongside the popular delivery service.

Her ambition is to curate a full gluten-free range. She said: “Our cafe was a haven for families who may have had a coeliac child or someone in the party with dairy or other allergies.

"This would have been the only place they could visit secure in the knowledge that the food would not cause an adverse reaction.

"Now, we have pivoted the business to offer a fully stocked deli and mini market with an extensive range of products on the shelves that will be a delight to those who need to monitor their food intake for health reasons.”