A POPULAR Eden takeaway has been recognised as among the 50 best fish and chip shops.

Shap Chippy made the list again after an independent company sent mystery diners to each shop and assessed a range of front-of-house features. These ranged from staff friendliness, cleanliness of the takeaway to how knowledgeable staff are about the products on offer

Points were also awarded for the quality of the food with everything being critiqued from the crispness of the batter, to the size and fluffiness of the inside of chips, to the flakiness and texture of the fish.

Jo Hampson, co-owner of Shap Chippy, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be in the top 50 – out of 10,500 chippies in the UK that’s not bad!”

Georgina Perkins said “A mystery shop report is quite scary, but knowing we got over 96 per cent – and 100 per cent for all aspects of the quality of our food – fish, batter and chips – is very pleasing. We have a great team.”

Competition organiser Reece Head said: “We would like to congratulate all those shops that made our Top 50 Fish & Chip Takeaways 2016. We know it’s a tough set of criteria our judges lay down and so it takes a lot of hard work, dedication and passion to ensure staff perform day-in-day-out in order to impress our judges when they come in unannounced.

“There are a lot of different facets to running a fish and chip takeaway and those shops that have made the list go over and above the everyday requirements to deliver exceptional food matched with an equal level of service and atmosphere. It could be just a tiny detail that separates those shops that did make the list from those that didn’t, for example the fact that staff wear a name badge or has a menu board on display detailing where the shop’s fish and potatoes are sourced.

"But it’s these little details that can make a big difference and we believe those shops investing that extra time, effort and training deserve to be recognised for their achievements.”

While all 50 takeaways receive a certificate to display in their shop and an A2 window poster detailing their achievement, every entrant is sent a copy of their mystery dining sheet, providing valuable feedback and a chance for operators to improve their business.