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Photographer's Note

Fish and Chips is one of Britain's favourite traditional foods. And if you don't fancy fish with your chips, there is today a much larger choice of food available at the local chippy such as sausages, fried chicken, chicken nuggets, beef burgers and spam fritters. Many fish and chip shops these days also offer extras such as mushy peas, bread, gravy, baked beans and curry sauce.

These days, you can go into a chip shop and get almost anything you fancy fried in hot vegetable oil. Regional variations apply of course. The availability of deep-fried Mars bars and battered pizzas across the chippies of Glasgow may be connected with the city's proud position at number one in Europe's heart disease chart. Early recollections of the menu at the Great Western reveal a small board on the back wall. The staples of the Seventies chippy were fish, tinned and fresh roe, fishcakes, pies and pasties. In much the same way as chicken tikka masala suddenly appeared on every Indian takeaway menu, so it was with certain items in fish and chip shops. One shop would add something to their menu, and within a week the rest had heard about it and followed suit.

THE typical retail fish frying shop run by its owners, usually husband and wife and with part-time help, represents a continuing tradition which goes back in Great Britain to the early days of the 19th century. Charles Dickens, in his novel Oliver Twist, mentions a fried fish warehouse, but it was not until the 1860s that the trade began to develop as we know it now.

The National Federation of Fish Friers was founded in 1913 to watch over the interests of its members' specialist trade. Today, over 80 years later, it is the largest organisation representing the largest take-away food trade in the country. 9,000 fried fish shops having an annual turnover of over 650M sell 60,000 tonnes of fish (abut one-quarter of all the white fish consumed in the UK) and 500,000 tonnes of potatoes (over 10% of all potatoes eaten by British people). It is, therefore, important that the trade is properly represented to government, growers and the fishing industry to ensure continuity of supplies and the continuing prosperity of the trade. The NFFF has successfully carried out these tasks for many years and looks far the support of all the trade to enable it to continue serving all who supply the British public with its traditional fare.

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Additional Photos by Rob Janovski (robiuk) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1702 W: 188 N: 2459] (10807)
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