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North Yorkshire deli Hunters of Helmsley named Britain’s Best Small Shop

Hunters of Helmsley has been named Britain’s Best Small Shop at a House of Commons ceremony, having been selected from hundreds of entries by an independent panel of judges.

The North Yorkshire deli, which this year celebrates its 25th birthday, was first shortlisted in the top 20, before being named as the overall winner at an event held on 25th February. The Best Small Shops Competition was run by the All Party Parliamentary Small Shops Group and administered by the Independent Retailers Confederation.

Chris and Christine Garnett, the husband and wife team who have owned Hunters of Helmsley since 2008, attended the event and accepted the award from Simon Danczuk, MP.

The deli impressed the judges with its commitment to supporting local producers and suppliers, an innovative approach to partnerships and social media and the key role the retailer played in setting up the Helmsley in Business group, which now has 50 members working together to promote the town for the benefit of all local businesses.

Christine Garnett said: “We were delighted to make the final 20, so to be announced overall winner was just unbelievable – I don’t think either of us quite took it in when they said it was us! All of the finalists were inspirational, it was great having the opportunity to meet them, and they should be very proud of their businesses. We just love what we do – we work very hard, but finding and sharing the best food and drink is our passion, and so we’re very lucky. We have an excellent team working with us, and we just want to thank them for everything they do, along with thanking the wider Helmsley community. It’s a great place to be based, and the business network is so supportive of each other. As far as we’re concerned we’re a town full of Britain’s Best Small Shops!”

Simon Danczuk MP, Chairman of the All Party Small Shops Group, revealing the winner, said: “I am pleased to announced that the Hunters Of Helmsley, a deli in North Yorkshire, is the Winner of the Best Small Shop Competition 2015. Hunters of Helmsley was chosen by the judges for its local sourcing of produce, organisation of events to support their high street and their use of social media to engage customers.”

Hunters of Helmsley stocks an unusually extensive range of fresh and store cupboard foods and beverages, along with gifts, kitchenware, hampers and seasonal goodies. At least 70 per cent of the products sold are sourced from within Yorkshire. The Garnetts are both from Yorkshire farming families, and believe that where and how food is made is vitally important. Chris ran a beef, sheep and arable farm on the edge of Wharfedale with his father for over 18 years and Christine’s family still farm in West Yorkshire. Before buying Hunters they owned a successful fish and chip shop in Horsforth, Leeds for seven years.

More information about the competition can be found at www.bestsmallshops.uk. For further details about Hunters of Helmsley log on to: www.huntersofhelmsley.com