Here is the Top 10 Shortlist for Employee of the Year
Charlie Bennett
November 27, 2023

Fish friers from across the UK have been reeling in the nominations for the opportunity to be named Employee of the Year, an all-new category for the National Fish and Chip Awards.

Over the last few months, the fish and chip industry has been proposing which colleagues and peers deserve to be recognised for their standout contributions to the businesses they work for. Of the many applicants, 10 will continue the judging process having caught the attention of the fish and chip expert panel, who inspected the nominees’ industry knowledge, work ethic, customer service skills and more.

The award provides an opportunity to champion small businesses in local communities. Employers’ investment into skills development is a key ingredient for helping team members serve up the best experience for fish and chip diners, as well as furthering their personal career progression in the industry.

President of the National Federation of Fish Friers Andrew Crook, and awards organiser says: “The greatest asset any chip shop, or business, could ever have is its people and we have received a fantastic amount of nominations for individuals who are setting the bar sky high and blazing a fantastic trail for others. It’s so exciting for us to see how passionate these professionals are for the industry and how much their careers mean to them, as well as the customers they serve.”

Sarah Robb, foodservice marketing manager at Premier Foods, and sponsor of the category said: “As home to some of the nation’s much-loved brands such as McDougalls, Bisto and Batchelors, we’re delighted to support this new category in the National Fish and Chip awards. As the UK’s most popular dish*, fish and chips is an iconic British institution and we’re thrilled to celebrate the passionate people up and down the country who make the industry thrive.”

*YouGov Q4 2022

Nominees will face the judges for one last time, with four to make it through to the finals, with the victor to be announced at the awards ceremony on 28 February 2024 at the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge, London.

The 10 chip shop employees in with a chance to ‘clam’ the Employee of the Year award are:

County Durham

Donna Whitfield – Bells Fish & Chips, Durham


Liam Williams – Jennyfield Fisheries, Harrogate

Joanne Newman – Towngate Fisheries, Bradford

Greater Manchester/Cheshire     

Jamie Toland – Taylors, Stockport


Seyed Mirabedini – Bishopston Fish and Chips


Jonathan Ciardini – Rickys, Southbourne


Zak Bishop – Squires Fish Restaurant & Take Away, Braunton

James Astles – Pier Point Bar & Restaurant, Torquay  


Mary Carpenter – Fish Kitchen 1854, Maesycwmmer


Keira Copeland – Garioch Fish Bar, Inverurie

For more information and bits on the National Fish and Chip Awards, please visit:

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