A MOBILE deli business which evolved from a lockdown food delivery service has landed a top award.

Barron’s Mobile Shop has won the East Anglian regional final for the Farm Shop and Deli Award.

The business is run by Chappel farming couple Sarah and Ross Barron, who also have the G&J Barron turkey farm in the village.

It operates out the back of a large refrigerated van which serves as a walk-in shop and delivers local produce to nearby villages.

But the businesses was once just a humble food delivery service.

Sarah, who runs the shop and drives the van, first started the delivering produce from the farm’s shop at the start of the first lockdown.

Residents in Great Tey, Little Tey and Aldham had no shops from where they could buy food so Sarah began delivering produce from the back of a trailer hitched to a 1960s tractor.

The service was a big hit with residents which led to the mobile shop evolving to its current format in August 2020.

Since then, Sarah has added Marks Tey to the list of delivery locations.

Residents can buy from a selection of bread, cakes, milkshakes, meat and fruit pies, pasties, sausage rolls, pork pies, Scotch eggs and East Anglian cheeses alongside the original fresh fruit, veg and meats.

Sarah said: “We got to July and the weather started to get hotter, so we got the van in August. It does the job.

“It was actually some of my customers who nominated me for the award.

“People like it. They can come and choose what they want in the van and they can buy as much or as little as they need.

“A lot of our customers live on their own and there’s not really much of a bus route in the villages.

“It has been a success, definitely but it has its ups and downs. During a tight lockdown is when we get really busy.

“It has been hard work in the last year. I was just pleased to be nominated at first and to be mentioned alongside other big farm shops.”

The shop’s victory was announced by judge and food and drink broadcaster Nigel Barden on YouTube.

He said: “It’s quite remarkable, they’ve completely changed the business by taking to the streets in a 1960s tractor and trailer before buying a refrigerated van.

“They provide a service to three villages with no shops, a friendly voice to those living on their own and are a village bugle – a waking talking newsletter.

“There’s complete trust as customers help themselves from the van which is driven to their door and they use their own bags, buying the exact quantities required.

“This business has grown from a three day pop-up Christmas farm shop and is a fabulous example of rapid improvisation and reacting to customer needs.”