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Chip, chip, hooray!

HE Midlands has got a new champion chippy!

TOldswinford Fish & Chips has taken on the best from nine counties - and been declared to have battered the opposition into submission.

This shop is now the sole business representing the entire region in the bid to be voted the UK's Independent Takeaway Fish and Chip Shop of the Year.

In August, it was 'plaiced' on a shortlist of six - with three chippies representing the West Midlands, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Shropshire, Herefordshire and three more covering the counties of Northamptonshire, Worcestershire, Gloucestershire and Warwickshire.

To decide which shops would make the last two perches, judges had to weigh up the rival clams of Catchems End, Bewdley, The Golden Carp and Winyates Chippy in Redditch (both run by chips genius Theo Ellinas), Chesters in Chesterfield, Seafish Restaurant in Ripley and Oldswinford Fish & Chips in the Black Country.

On September 20, the runners and friers were reduced to two - Oldswinford and The Golden Carp.

Now, the Mail can reveal that the Midlands champion chippy for the UK finals in January is Oldswinford Fish & Chips.

And they will be hoping to follow the mighty Midlands' example set by last year's UK winners - Simpsons Fish & Chips in Cheltenham.

Zach Ioannou, co-owner of Oldswinford Fish & Chips, said: "Our shop has been in our family for more than 39 years, but we re-branded to Oldswinford Fish & Chips in 2012 when my brother, John, and I took over.

"We've since established a loyal customer base although competition around here is unbelievable.

"Having unsuccessfully entered this award category three years ago, reaching the top ten this year comes as longawaited recognition. "We took on board all the comments and feedback from previous entries to the awards and look where we are now.

"We place a strong focus on customer service and marketing - working hard with our team of 10 dedicated staff to ensure all of our customers are happy with the fish and chips experience. It means the world to the family to be named the Midlands' best fish and chip shop as part of this year's awards. Let's hope we bring the overall national title home!" Seafish chief executive Marcus Coleman said: "The Independent Takeaway Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award is one of the highest honours a fish and chip business can receive.

"The judging process is extremely challenging with shops thoroughly being put through their paces - all ten finalists are a credit to the industry and I commend them for reaching this stage of the competition."

They will face a final round of judging in London on January 25 before the result is revealed on January 26.

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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Oct 6, 2016
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