Poppies Fish and Chips shop in Spitalfields to batter it out against TV chef Rick Stein

A take-away shop in Spitalfields has joined the likes of TV chef Rick Stein after reaching the semi final in a search for the country’s best independent fish and chips restaurant.

Poppies Fish and Chips restaurant and Takeaway in Hanbury Street, off Brick Lane, now has to batter it out against nine other semi-finalists in the competition run by Seafish, the government authority on seafood.

The family business will be up against top names such Stein’s Fish and Chips in Padstow and Quayside in Whitby.

Pat Newland, of Poppies, said: “Reaching the top ten is fantastic to say the least. It’s great that someone cares about how well we run our shops. It’s a massive pat on the back. “This is the first time we’ve entered the awards and the team has put their heart and soul into it. The response from our customers has been brilliant too.”

The shops will be narrowed down to three in the final round of judging next month (September). The winner will be crowned at an awards ceremony at London’s Lancaster Hotel in January.

The award focuses on every aspect of running a fish and chip outlet, including the premises, product, staff, customer service and how a restaurant promotes and markets itself.

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