Northumberland businesses enjoy surge in demand thanks to The Hairy Bikers
Customers have been flocking to taste ‘the best fish and chips ever’ after Northumberland featured on The Hairy Bikers Go North.
Si King and Dave Myers visited a number of local food producers and restaurants for the BBC Two show and the publicity has already paid off.
At The Potted Lobster in Bamburgh where Dave raved about the fish and chips, head chef Richard Sim said: “The response has been fantastic. We’re certainly glad they came!
"We’ve seen a big increase in web traffic and bookings have dramatically increased.
"November would normally see bookings tailing off after what has been a really busy summer so appearing on the programme has massively increased our trade for this time of year.
"We’re also hoping that the increased web traffic means more people are thinking about visiting us next summer.”
The Hairy Bikers also visited The Fish Shack in Amble, Lindisfarne Oysters, Jimmy ‘The Lamb Man’ Bell and Wooler-based Particularly Good Potatoes on their travels around the county, staying at an apartment in Bamburgh Castle.
Barbara Morris, operations manager at the Turvelaws Farm potato business, said: “To say the phone has never stopped ringing would be an understatement. It’s been fabulous.
"We’ve got several new customers and have received a lot of support so it’s been fantastic for us.
"The only unfortunate thing is that we’ve had a lot of enquiries about people wanting the potatoes for home use but because they’re vacuum packed and need to be kept chilled we’re not in a position to do that at this stage. Restaurants and chip shops are our bread and butter.”
The Fish Shack in Amble has also been enjoying a welcome uplift in business.
Owner Martin Charlton said: “It’s been heaving all summer but traditionally it would start quietening down this week. But since the programme went out we’ve had a lot more bookings coming in.
"It prolongs our season and makes the winter a bit shorter so it’s been really good for us.
"I think people have seen we’re right on the harbour and have this fresh produce coming in daily and want to come and try it – and it helps when Si mentions that he’s a regular customer!”
And Christopher Sutherland of Lindisfarne Oysters said: “It was great fun having the Hairy Bikers here for filming last year, so long ago I had almost forgotten about it.
"There has been a big response to the programme going out noticeably with an increase in private orders through the website and people collecting oysters from the farm. I hope we do not run out of oysters!”
All are delighted that the programme showed Northumberland at its best.
As Richard from The Potted Lobster says: “They couldn’t have filmed it any better, it looked stunning. Right from the start when they showed dolphins off the pier end at Amble it was great to watch and there was an important message throughout about the value of local producers in reducing carbon footprint.”
The Hairy Bikers Go North is available on BBC iPlayer.