Two Chester butchers proved they have the recipe for success after winning a string of awards in a regional meat competition.

Bruce Edge from Ernest W Edge in Handbridge and Stuart Bebbington of S J Bebbington in Westminster Park, scooped a number of accolades for their tasty meats in the annual BPEX competition.

The awards ceremony, held at the Reebok Stadium in Bolton, looks at the region’s highest quality produce and grades it on different criteria including taste, look and size.

Bruce, who entered the competition for the first time this year, was thrilled to win awards in all of the five categories he entered, including a silver for his traditional pork sausage, and bronze for his two separate speciality sausages which feature pork, sage, red onion, rosemary and thyme.

Gold was awarded for his tenderloin of pork, which is stuffed with bramley apple and dried apricot, wrapped in streaky bacon and glazed in spiced mushroom oil.

Bruce, who previously ran his family business alongside grandfather Ernie and dad John, said it was an honour to be recognised.

“This is the first time we’ve entered this and to win all our categories is great,” he said.

“It helps give a standard against other butchers and we believe very much in selling highest quality products as much as possible.

It’s also good to have good critical feedback from top judges to improve our quality.”

And Stuart, who has won a number of awards at BPEX in previous years, came up trumps again this year, winning in nine of the twelve categories.

Stuart Bebbington, of S J Bebbington, with Jamie Barker and Joe Farmer with their award-winning meat
Stuart Bebbington, of S J Bebbington, with Jamie Barker and Joe Farmer with their award-winning meat
 

He was awarded gold for his traditional pork sausage, traditional pork pie and specialist sausage Petaroo, the recipe for which was chosen by customer Chris Owens from Westminster Park.

And as if that wasn’t enough, he also won a bronze award for his Parisian pork steak and silver for

Stuart said: “We have entered this competition before so we know how the system works but it’s always a learning curve.

“It’s a great place to try out our new products and get guidance from the judges.

“We’re really pleased.”