Humans of New Yorkshire


Here at Plusnet, we're proud of our Yorkshire roots. That's why our new content series, Humans of New Yorkshire, will look into the stories behind the business owners and discover what makes them do what they do, how they use tools like business broadband to grow, how they view life as a small business, and their relationship to Yorkshire.

We've partnered with small business network Enterprise Nation to dig deeper into this regional entrepreneurial trend.

The study found that in 2019, Yorkshire businesses have outdone the rest of the UK with 43% of Yorkshire SME’s reporting a better financial performance in the past 6 months compared to 36% outside of the region.


The Humans of New Yorkshire series is back, with five businesses from Leeds and Sheffield. This series will feature an illustrator, barbershop, menswear shop, textiles designer and a Middle-Eastern restuarant.


Kristyna Baczynski is a illustrator, comic book artist and designer from Leeds. Her strong work ethic has propelled her illustrations into the world of Twitter, Metro, Chipotle and Etsy. She puts her hustle mentality down to living in Leeds, where the DIY ethos in the city has been an integral part of her career.

Cutsmiths Barbers in Leeds became so popular, the queues out of the shop were 4-5 hours long! With the shop getting too busy to handle the admin, they created their own booking app to relieve the pressure. They now have their own line of products, including waxes, beard oils and shaving products.

Arnold & Co menswear store in Sheffield began selling their Forge Denim jeans online, before opening a store on the city’s busy Ecclesall Road. Their jeans reflect Sheffield’s strong manufacturing heritage, with the steel buttons being created in one of Sheffield’s remaining steel factories. Sheffield is a city of makers, and the Forge Denim jeans reflect that.

Laura Slater has always been passionate about the textiles industry, after her mum and other family members used to spend hours in mills and on market stalls looking at fabrics. Luckily for Laura, she’s been able to make a career out of her passion. In recent years, her business has gone from strength to strength, working with big names like John Lewis and IKEA.


The Humans of New Yorkshire series intially launched with eight businesses from Leeds, Sheffield, York, and Huddersfield. The series featured a botanist, a cutler, a vintage clothing store, a brewery and a variety of unique concept eateries...


Botanic in York is a plant shop founded by bat ecologist who had time on her hands while the bats were hibernating. Staffed by houseplant fanatics, the shop doubles as a green agony aunt haven where locals bring in their plants for advice and TLC.

Dog & Bone Vintage in York is the passion project of Nic – a former student in the city whose love of vintage clothes and design led him to open his store. A trove of beautiful clothing attracts customers from far and wide as they indulge on a treasure hunt for that perfect piece.

Fat Annie’s is an artisan hot dog vendor in Leeds founded after owner James accepted redundancy from his previous office job. To create the perfect hotdog he travelled to New York for five days on a pilgrimage and returned with the knowledge and passion to build a place where both meat eaters and vegans could enjoy the best ‘dog’ possible.

Five Rivers Coffee Co. in Sheffield was started after couple Jim and Melissa travelled to Vietnam and were inspired by the food and drink of the country. Donating a portion of their proceeds to Vietnamese charities, the café is a bright and beautiful haven and claimed to be the most Instagram-able venue in the steel city.

Magic Rock Tap in Huddersfield is the passion project of local lad Rich who decided to do something different from his family’s gemstone business. The brewery and taproom are now a focal point of the community and bring people to Huddersfield from all over the country.

Michael May Knives was born from founder Michael’s love for Sheffield’s bygone steel industry, buying his first equipment from another master who sadly passed on shortly after training him. Michael still uses Trevor’s patterns and carries on his legacy with his own flair in an effort to maintain the skills and artistry that made Sheffield famous.

NO NAME in Sheffield is the brainchild of Tom, a chef who cut his teeth in some of the capital’s busiest kitchens but wanted to bring Michelin-style dining to a more relaxed environment. After finding success with a pop-up bistro in his Mum's dining room, he set up in an old shop front with only 16 seats and two sittings a night, the restaurant now books up weeks in advance, and has been recently featured in The Good Food Guide 2019

OWT is a sustainable, fully-cyclical café using produce from local traders in the market by owners Esther and James. At home in Leeds’ Kirkgate Market and with an everchanging menu they aim to bring the social element back to Yorkshire food by being community focus.


View Humans of New Yorkshire - Botanic
Humans of New Yorkshire - Botanic
View Humans of New Yorkshire - Five Rivers Coffee Co
Humans of New Yorkshire - Five Rivers Coffee Co
View Humans of New Yorkshire - Magic Rock Brewing
Humans of New Yorkshire - Magic Rock Brewing