Moray chipper in line for national quality award

The Fochabers Fish Bar received a recent thumbs-up from Richard Lochhead MSP
The Fochabers Fish Bar received a recent thumbs-up from Richard Lochhead MSP

A MORAY CHIPPER is in line for national recognition when it lines up against some of the finest in the country.

The Fochabers Fish Bar has reached the final stages for the 2016 National Fish and Chips awards, which will be decided in London next month.

Only three chip shops are in the running for the Quality award handed out each year by the National Federation of Fish Friers (NFFF), with the Fochabers shop competing against venues in Lincoln and Bradford.

The popular Fochabers chipper was taken on just two years ago by former RAF Lossiemouth airman Darren Boothroyd, who swapped a 22-year career as an engineer for life in front of the fryers.

A delighted Darren, who is originally from Huddersfield, said he and his staff were “chuffed to bits”, adding: “The quality award is an indication that I’m running this business as I should be and being recognised like this has always been my ultimate goal.  But the real reward is being able to keep our customers happy.”

Around 60 businesses were originally in the running for the award and these were narrowed down to three after industry experts visited each anonymously to inspect the chippers and their product.

Speaking for the NFFF, Richard Wardell said: “The standard of entries received this year was very high and the judges have been impressed with the level of dedication displayed.”

Launched in January 2011 to replace the previous Seafish Friers Quality Award, The NFFF Fish & Chip Quality Award is a scheme aimed at improving standards and rewarding shops that provide top quality fish and chips in a clean, hygienic and safe environment.

The Quality Award is all about finding those shops throughout the UK that give their customers the best quality fish and chips, assessing them against our quality benchmark and rewarding successful applicants who pass the inspection and the taste test, with Quality Award certification.

The winner will be announced at the Lancaster Hotel in London on January 20.