With a well-established fish and chip takeaway and a restaurant on the south side of the River Eden in Carlisle, Chris Hendren jumped at the chance to buy a derelict Spa on the untapped north side. What he never envisaged, however, was that it would take two and a half years to get planning permission and that when The Fryery in Scotland Road would finally open in January 2021, the UK would be in the middle of a third lockdown.

I had second thoughts so many times,” says Chris. But Im so glad I stuck with it because its gone from strength to strength. Generally, the summer months in the city are not busy for the takeaway trade, but weve had a fantastic summer at Scotland Road. In fact, both takeaways have just got stronger and stronger and even now are growing by about 5% each month.”

Although Chriss staff are well-versed in frying on a Kiremko, having installed one three years previous at the Newtown Road takeaway, Chris has spent over 16 years behind traditional ranges. When he took up the reins at Scotland Road and worked on the new five pan Kiremko island range, it took him just two days to understand what it is the team love so much about it.

Chris comments: On a Friday tea time the range does not stop from four oclock until half past eight and it will cope with whatever we throw at it. We never have to wait on anything because the power is fantastic and the pans don’t lose temperature at all. The busier we are, the fresher the food.”

Realising the benefits of basket frying early on, Chris adds: With our Kiremko we can fry little and often and we fry the exact amount we need, when we need it so we get fresh chips all the time. There’s no excuse for a box full of chips and for them not to be fresh.

Well put a basket in and if we need to drop another basket, well drop another one so one pan is getting different chips at different times. I just love it and it means were getting quality all the time, which is what my shops are built on.

Anybody that wants to have that edge should learn to fry on a Kiremko, its the way forward.”

The range also benefits from built in-filtration, enabling Chris to drop and clean all five pans in just 25 minutes, as well three heat lamps that keep click and collect orders hot until customers arrive. And despite having so much advanced technology built-in, Chris finds the range simple to work himself and even easier to train new starters.

Four pans tend to be adequate through the week so when it comes to training new members of staff well start them off on the spare pan and watch over them,” Chris explains. “Everythings programmed in – apart from the fish because we do different sizes – so the sausages, chicken, nuggets and fishcakes are all on timers which means there is less room for error.

And weve got the luxury of space, being an island range were not all crammed in. It just makes for a nice place to work.”

With the takeaway looking good and performing well, Chris believes The Fryery has become an asset to the area, and adds: Its so busy that we need to take it to the next step. As soon as we can get the staff were looking to go from five days a week to seven.

Im really pleased with how its going and it has got me thinking maybe theres room for another shop. If so, KFE would be the first people I would talk to.”

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