OLDSWINFORD Fish and Chips has been announced as one of the two best chip shops in the entire Midlands.

The Hagley Road chippy, which reached the final of the 2017 National Fish and Chip Awards, is just one step away from repeating that feat – reaching the top 20 nationwide.

Competing to be crowned Independent Takeaway Fish and Chip Shop of the Year, the shop is now aiming for a ‘plaice’ in the grand final as the ‘sole’ Midlands representative, as it takes on Redditch’s Golden Carp Chippy – which also made it to the Midlands’ final two last year.

To get to this stage of the competition – organised by Seafish – the shop has been appraised across a variety of judging criteria including responsible sourcing policies, marketing and promotional practices and staff training policies.

Zach Ioannou, co-owner of Oldswinford Fish and Chips, said: “I was delighted to hear we had made it into the top 20 once again.

“I would love for us to make it to the final again to continue the success we had last year, especially with it being our 40 year anniversary.”

Oldswinford overcame competition in the previous ‘Midlands top 10’ round from fellow Stourbridge chippys Merchants and Norton Fisheries.

Zach added: “When you aspire to be the best, everybody else wants the same success so we all try even harder. That means the people of Stourbridge benefit and get really good, quality food.

“It’s great for Stourbridge that there are so many good quality fish shops in the town.

“Great customer service is a big deal to myself and I feel that our staff offer some of the best customer service around.”

Over the coming week, Oldswinford will be subjected to further assessment with judges making unannounced visits to undertake full business audits and additional appraisal of the fish and chips on offer.

This judging stage will determine a top 10 list of shops who will progress to the final of the competition.

Marcus Coleman, chief executive at Seafish, said: “As the Midlands’ top shops go head-to-head to secure their place in the final, I’ll look forward to seeing who fry’s out on top.”

The winner of the Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Award will be announced at The National Fish & Chip Awards’ 30th anniversary ceremony in London on January 25, 2018.