Fish shops battle it out to be Britain’s best chippie

Fish and Chips

Fish shops in York, Southport, Redditch and Lincoln are set to battle it out with six other rivals for the right to be crowned Britain’s best chippie.

The National Fish & Chip Awards has named ten regional finalists who will go forward to compete for the title of Fish and Chip Shop of the Year.

The ten finalists are:

• Fylde Fish Bar, Marshside, Southport, Merseyside (North West England)
• Millers Fish & Chips, Haxby, York, North Yorkshire (North East England)
• The Golden Carp Chippy, Redditch, Worcestershire (Midlands)
• Burton Road Chippy, Lincoln, Lincolnshire (Eastern England)
• Cromars Classic Fish & Chips, St Andrews, Fife (Scotland)
• Penaluna’s Famous Fish & Chips, Hirwaun, Rhonda Cynon Taff (Wales)
• The Dolphin Takeaway, Dungannon, County Tyrone (Northern Ireland)
• Henley’s of Wivenhoe, Wivenhoe, Colchester, Essex (London & South East England)
• Captain’s Fish and Chips, Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire (Central & Southern England)
• Harbourside Fish & Chips, Plymouth, Devon (South & West England)

To make it to this final stage of the competition, the ten shops had their frying skills put to the test as well as being assessed against a variety of judging criteria, including menu development and innovation, sustainable sourcing policies, staff training processes and marketing activity. Judges also made unannounced visits to shop premises to undertake full business audits and additional appraisal of the fish and chips and level of customer service that were on offer.

The ten shops will now progress to the final stage of judging, which takes place in London in January 2018. Facing a specialist judging panel they will each be quizzed on a range of industry related topics and be required to demonstrate how they successfully run a profitable business and plan for future development.

Marcus Coleman, chief executive at award organiser Seafish, said: “The Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award is one of the highest honours a fish and chip business can receive, and it is renowned for its competitive nature rewarding only the best of the best in the industry.

“Entrants are judged on every element of running a successful fish and chip business; from the product itself to how they are responding to wider industry issues like responsible and sustainable sourcing of key ingredients. By the time the awards ceremony comes around, our finalists have gone through a comprehensive seven-month judging process.

“Having watched our ten finalists progress through the competition, I can safely say that their skill and dedication is outstanding – they are a true representation of the crème de la crème of our industry and sum up perfectly why British fish and chips are, and will always be, the best in the world.”

The ten finalists will receive an expenses-paid study trip to Norway, courtesy of sponsor the Norwegian Seafood Council. Visiting the port city of Ålesund, the finalists will learn all about the supply chain of Frozen At Sea (FAS) fish from Norway to the UK.

They will also have the chance to witness the whole fishing process; from catch to processing and filleting, and learn about the science behind Norway’s successful fishery management policies and practices, making it one of the world’s most sustainable fishing nations.

The overall winner of the Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award will be announced at The National Fish & Chip Awards’ 30th anniversary ceremony in London on January 25 next year.

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