Fish & Chips @ Weston Grove has been named the winner of Most Heroic Team in the Heinz Food Heroes Awards.
The Chester-based chippy was chosen from over 150 entries across foodservice due to the host of initiatives in runs to support its community. This includes sponsoring a homeless football team to provide team skills and reduce isolation, feeding 40 people a week in temporary hostels (during and after lockdown) and complimentary meals for the elderly to encourage interaction and alleviate loneliness.
It’s the first chippy to be Makaton-friendly and is also dementia-friendly. Children visit the shop and take part in activities relating to sustainability and the versatility of potatoes, for science and regular cooking lessons give local families the skills to prepare nutritious meals at home. They’re also plastic-free pioneers.
The award comes with £5,000, which Fish & Chips @ Weston Grove plans to put towards its homeless football team in addition to aiding professional development by sending staff on a course at Billingsgate Market in London.
Commenting on the win, Josette Foster, co-owner of Fish & Chips @ Weston Grove, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled to receive this very special award. Fish and Chip shops across the country have been at the heart of the community for 160 years. We understand the important role we play in supporting the wider community and our social responsibility to care for our extended family. This really comes from the heart, not just during this difficult year - it’s a long term commitment to giving something back.”
A second award, Most Heroic Individual, went to Tracey Harriott, supervisor at Starbucks at Amadeus at Birmingham's NEC.
Launched by Heinz and hospitality networking association Arena, the Heinz Food Heroes awards recognise and celebrate those within the food industry who have gone above and beyond in their community.
The judging panel comprised of Leo Kattou, head chef at Simpson’s restaurant and 2019 MasterChef: The Professionals finalist; Candice Brown, winner of The Great British Bake Off 2016; Lorraine Wood, director of Arena; and Jojo de Noronha, Kraft Heinz Northern European President.
Jojo de Noronha, Kraft Heinz Northern Europe President, says: “Selecting overall winners for these awards was exceptionally difficult. It’s been the most challenging year most of us have ever faced and we know that there are heroes from all walks of life and from all corners of the country. As an industry, I’m sure we all offer our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has gone above and beyond to contribute to those that need it most.
“Both of our winners stood out for their approach in supporting the community as a whole; many different people benefit from their fantastic work and support.”