Last month, Urban Echo featured the inspirational story ’50 Years Of Excellence’ celebrating the extraordinary journey of success by one of Bradford’s most iconic eateries, Sweet Centre.
The feature received much response and feedback as Urban Echo was the first publication within the West Yorkshire region to feature the story. As well as going viral on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, ’50 Years of Excellence’ became the talk of the town and inspired many residents locally as well as nationally to pursue their dreams with hard work, dedication and perseverance.
On 12th December, 2014, parts of Lumb Lane in Bradford were lit up like the streets of Las Vegas as birthday celebrations were in full swing celebrating a momentous occasion. Shimmering lights swathing the face of the premises from top to bottom, Sweet Centre was officially 50 years old. Men, women and children from all faiths and backgrounds queued outside the venue in the early hours to treat themselves and their families to the award-winning breakfast, which has made Sweet Centre a household name to many Bradfordians. But not only Bradfordians were celebrating this remarkable occasion as many visitors travelled as far as Manchester, Birmingham and Coventry to join in with the celebrations.
Mr Malik from Birmingham lived in Bradford twenty years ago and regularly travels to Bradford exclusively to visit his favourite food place. As he munches on his favoured Halwa Puri, he tells Urban Echo, “Sweet Centre is simply the best in the UK. I have lived in Birmingham for the last twenty years and I have yet to come across a place that can compete with Sweet Centre. I just pray that the owners will one day come to Birmingham and open Sweet Centre in my city.”
It is clear that the reputation Sweet Centre has for quality food is not only local. It is also testament to the owners who have, throughout the last half century, worked tirelessly to build the reputation that it is deservedly enjoying today.
As the celebrations continued throughout the day with hordes of customers and well-wishers entering and exiting every minute, Liaqat Habib, the son of Haji Abdul Rehman Sahib (Late) was enjoying a more low-key affair with his close family as he took this opportunity to reflect on the last fifty years and the foundation that his father had laid for him and his children.
A simple gesture of cutting a cake with his mother and elder brother Mohammad Gulzar Rehman whilst surrounded by his family was the celebration Mr Habib had in mind.
Sweet Centre’s success is also down to the dedicated staff who have been loyal to the business for many years. Mr Mohammed Habib has been working with Sweet Centre for over 30 years and received a pleasant surprise at the party as Mr Habib presented him with a return flight ticket to Mecca to perform the Umrah (a pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, performed by Muslims that can be undertaken at any time of the year).
Bradford is very fortunate and proud to have Sweet Centre in the heart of its city. With the new branch in Halifax going from strength to strength with a more diverse menu, Sweet Centre can act as a great ambassador for the city across the country. Who knows, one day Mr Malik’s dream may come true when Sweet Centre lands in his city!