Monday, 27 September 2021

Marketing director chips in with van venture

A FORMER company marketing director has launched a mobile chippy.

A FORMER company marketing director has launched a mobile chippy.

Mike Rogers, of Lovell Close, Henley, plans to tour villages in the area in the hope of creating a weekly “fish and chips night” in each place. He has already enjoyed success in Shiplake, visiting the memorial hall in Memorial Avenue every Thursday, and Hurley, where he goes to the Riverside Park caravan site on a Friday.

Mr Rogers, who is 55 and previously worked for toilet and bathtub-makers Thomas Crapper and Co, has called his travelling fish and chip outlet Stovell’s Fish Suppers, after his own middle name.

He got the idea for the business from his friends Bob and Sarah Withey, from Chipping Norton, who sell fish and chips from a van in villages around north Oxfordshire.

Mr Rogers worked for the couple for nine months to build up his experience and while he waited for his licence to be granted by South Oxfordshire District Council.

He said: “What I am trying to do is set up a fish and chips service in the villages around Henley, where there is not as much in terms of infrastructure. The idea is to give each venue a fish and chips night.

“The first one, in Shiplake, is going incredibly well and I want to say an enormous thank you to everyone from the village, who have been tremendously supportive. We also get people coming from Harpsden and Binfield Heath.

“I would welcome enquiries from any communities that would like their own fish and chips service. I am looking for middle-sized conurbations.”

Mr Rogers thanked the Witheys. He said: “They gave me a huge leg-up and it was important to go into the business knowing what I was doing. I spent months training in their chip van, learning what works and what doesn’t.

“The whole project has taken nine months to get up and running. It has cost tens of thousands of pounds to get the van, all the equipment and licence — all that to fry up a bit of cod.”

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