Portsmouth single mum and entrepreneur cements family legacy as new Cosham bakery set to open a few doors from great great grandfather's business

A SINGLE mum who turned her family legacy into a career is set to open a new bakery in Cosham.

Monday, 28th March 2022, 3:38 pm

Gemma Daysh, of Paulsgrove, has gone from being a stay-at-home parent and baking New York style stuffed cookies at home, to selling them at market stalls.

Now, after securing investment from a property developer, the entrepreneur is set to launch her bakery, The Cookie Queen, in Cosham High Street, by mid-April.

Ms Daysh said she cannot wait for launch day.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Gemma Daysh has cemented a family legacy as she is set to open The Cookie Queen, a few doors away from where Frank William Daysh, her great great Grandfather, ran Frank W. Daysh Bakery and Grocer, in the early 1900s.

She told The News: ‘The business is really starting to boom, and there is huge excitement around it.

Read More

Read More
Portsmouth mum ecstatic after life-changing cystic fibrosis drug is approved for...

‘I can’t wait to get it open, and the messages from people asking about it have been constant.

‘Everybody wants the cookie queen to be open, so it will be great to get everyone there soon.’

Gemma Daysh will soon have a hub for selling her 1/2lb New York style stuffed cookies, while continuing to sell her creations on market stalls. Picture: Gemma Daysh.

Ms Daysh’s baking passion originally came from making cakes with her Nan as a child.

She started selling her cookie creations last year, all while juggling home life with her son Charlie, 12, and daughter Ivy, 8.

This then grew into running stalls at the Love Southsea and Winchester City markets.

Ms Daysh wanted to build on that success by creating a central hub.

Ms Daysh's great great Grandfather, Frank William Daysh, ran his own Cosham High Street bakery in the early 1900s.

She thought her kitchen was too small for an expanding business.

The entrepreneur added: ‘I’m planning for this to be a brand, and for there to be a Cookie Queen on every high street.

‘The shop is the finale, so we’ve been focusing on bringing money into the business and getting it up and running.

‘It will soon be Portsmouth’s best and only cookie counter.’

Ms Daysh said she wanted to have a central hub for her business in Cosham high street, just like her great great Grandfather in the early 1900s. Picture: Gemma Daysh.

Her dreams were realised as she secured the High Street location, as well as cementing a family tradition.

Ms Daysh’s great great Grandfather, Frank Daysh, ran a bakery at the site of the Costa Coffee, named Frank W. Daysh Baker and Grocer.

She said: ‘My shop is going to be a few doors down from where my great great grandads bakery was in the early 1900s.

‘I’m bringing the family name back to the high street, and a passion for baking is in my veins.’

Ms Daysh has transformed herself from a carer and health campaigner into a successful businesswoman.

She used to solely look after little Ivy, who was suffering badly from Cystic Fibrosis – which causes breathing problems through the build-up of mucus in the lungs.

After organising a petition with over 100,000 signatures and ‘fighting tooth and nail’ to get life-saving medicine prescribed on the NHS, her daughter received in the ‘life-saving’ medicine in 2019.

Now, she’s an accredited businesswoman, with famous entrepreneur, Theo Paphitis, giving The Cookie Queen his small business award.

Ms Daysh often works until the early hours of the morning to make sure the business is fully stocked – selling her Kinder Bueno Cookie pies and New York cookies while organising the launch.

She is convinced her hard work will pay off.

The business owner said: ‘I’m a strong independent woman, and I’m pulling it off through sheer hard work and determination.

‘I’m determined to make this business successful, and the products are absolutely loved by my customers.

‘I think it will be successful, and I’m expecting it to boom.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

Subscribe here for unlimited access to all our coverage, including Pompey, for just 26p a day.