Award winning fare since the 1980s
HANBURY'S of Babbacome has plenty to celebrate in its 30th anniversary year.
The popular takeaway has just won the South West independent fish and chip shop of the year award for the second year running.
And, on a special charity day, boss Dave Hanbury will be celebrating that success by knocking 30 per cent off fish and chip prices (£3.99 for a medium cod and chips), one per cent off for each year he's been trading.
The charity day is on Tuesday, October 23, when the takeaway will be open from 11.30am until 9pm.
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And Dave will be giving all takings on that day to Rowcroft Hospice as part of Rowcroft's Dine at Mine campaign.
The multi-award winning chippie has grabbed the headlines many times during the last 30 years.
Through the Eighties, the Nineties and the Noughties, Hanbury's has won a plethora of awards handed out by a host of celebrities.
Since first entering the industry Fish and Chip Shop of the Year awards 25 years ago, Hanbury's has won the South West title an incredible EIGHT times.
It has led to several trips to London to receive awards from a wide range of celebrities.
Dave, his late wife, Maureen, and their sons, Stephen and Edward, all enjoyed a gala lunch in London, in 1997, when boxer Frank Bruno handed them an award for being the best fish and chip shop in South West England.
Other celebrities to have handed Dave awards since then include the likes of TV chefs James Martin and Ainsley Harriot and the supermodel Jodie Kidd.
From the outset Hanbury's has been a big supporter of local and national charities, with Rowcroft Hospice and CLIC, the Cancer and Leukaemia in Childhood charity, as well as Brixham Fishermen's Mission, Torbay Hospital League of Friends and the Torbay Holiday Helpers Network (THHN) among those to have been supported, often through innovative promotions.
In the Nineties, Hanbury's sold fish and chips wrapped in a replica front page of a 1945 edition of the Herald Express.
Dated May 7 - the day before VE Day - the newspaper, which cost just one penny, gave details of the unconditional surrender of all German troops in Europe.
Dave said at the time: "I've always thought that fish and chips taste best eaten from newspaper.
"They've got a long history of going together, a bit like bacon and eggs.
"The wrapping is dated from a time when good tradition and value for money went hand in hand - an ethic that we emulate in our shop."
It left Hanbury's customers not only well fed, but well read!
A little later in the decade Dave's tasty fare was wrapped in a Whodunnit edition of the Herald Express based on the Bay's great crime writer, Agatha Christie, and the Mysterious Affair of the Battered Fish.
Customers stood to win free family tickets for local holiday attractions if they uncovered the killer from clues found in the paper wraps!
A long-time supporter of the Torbay in Bloom initiative, the end of the 20th century brought one of many successes in the shops and stores category.
Shop manager at the time, John Parnell, said: "It represents the culmination of a lot of hard work, and it is nice to have this recognised.
"We enter for several reasons. It is a contribution to making Torbay a nice environment for us all to live and work in, but also for hard commercial reasons.
"People come to look at our displays, and inevitably some stop and buy some of our excellent food. It is all about offering our customers a quality experience."
The beginning of the Noughties saw the introduction of jazz music to the fish restaurant. Steve Chisholm's Art Deco Quartet were the resident band on a Wednesday evening, with a delightful programme of songs from the Twenties and Thirties.
Hanbury's has been involved in the local sporting scene, too, from sponsoring junior soccer teams to supporting the Gulls.
Dave knows sportsmen need to be well fed and he was just as happy to provide Willow Wanderers Under-9s with a meal to celebrate their first win as he has been to provide Torquay United players with healthy fare before a big game.
A big event for Dave and his team in the last few years has been the Hanbury's Fish and Chips Music Festival, which has entertained thousands since 2007, raising over £50,000 for charity in six years. This year, the Torbay Holiday Helpers Network were the beneficiaries.
Now assisted by general manager Jake Thorn, Dave is grateful to all his staff down the years.
"It's not easy getting everything just right," says Dave, "and I've been lucky to have wonderful staff all through the years."