Farmshop and Deli award for Town Mill Cheesemonger

TOWN Mill Cheesemonger, Justin Tunstall’s tiny specialist cheese shop at Lyme Regis, has beaten nearly 300 entries nationwide to win the Cheesemonger Of The Year award in the annual Farm Shop & Deli Awards.

Justin, who writes The Cheeseboard monthly article for the Fine Times Recorder, was understandably thrilled at the success. He said: “Wow! There are some truly great cheese shops in the UK, so it’s a real honour to come first in this competition. I blushed as I read some of the comments on the awards nominations from the regular customers, without whom our business wouldn’t exist.

“We try to treat every customer as though they are a ‘mystery shopper’ and I’m so proud of my staff who, as with all our visitors, ensured that the expert who judged us came away having had a great experience and clutching some outstanding cheeses! The win will put a real spring in our steps when we reopen on 13th February after our winter break.”

The Farm Shop & Deli Awards, in association with Olives Et Al of Sturminster Newton, recognise the very best standards in speciality retail and the highest levels of service, product knowledge, initiative, innovation and community involvement.

The awards celebrate the unsung heroes of the high street and speciality retail scene with categories ranging from butchers, bakers, farm shops and delis through to garden centres, food halls and online businesses.

Judge Neil Nugent, executive chef and head of product development at Morrison’s said: “The awards are a brilliant opportunity for the UK’s small independent businesses like Town Mill Cheesemonger to get recognition nationally and enable them to become a destination.”

The Farm Shop & Deli Awards received a record number of entrants from nearly 300 businesses across the UK, along with thousands of public votes from consumers supporting their favourite speciality retailers.

Town Mill Cheesemonger was one of 12 category winners and 25 commended, chosen after a day of intensive judging by leading speciality retailers and key industry figures along with mystery visits conducted throughout December by Nigel Barden, chairman of judges.

Nigel Barden said: “It’s gratifying to know that there are so many excellent purveyors of food and drink in Britain, like Town Mill Cheesemonger. During the mystery visits I have been delighted, moved and inspired by the people I’ve met and it’s inspiring to find Town Mill Cheesemonger is so much at the heart of their community.”

Judging of regional champions takes place during the February and the winners go through to the final. The overall Retailer of the Year winner will be announced at the Farm Shop & Deli Show on 24th March at Birmingham’s NEC.

For more information on Town Mill Cheesemonger visit: – and don’t miss Justin’s monthly Cheeseboard articles.


• Other regional wins and commendations in the Farm Shop & Deli Awards category winners are:

Baker of the Year, winner – East Bristol Bakery

Butcher of the Year, commended – Walter Rose and Son, Devizes.

Fishmonger of the Year, commended – The Scallop Shell, White Row Farm Shop near Frome.

Market of the Year, commended – Vale of Taunton Farmers Market

Online Business of the Year, commended – Green Pasture Farms Ltd. New Forest, Ower near Romsey