ONE of Belfast's most iconic fish and chip shops has officially been crowned the North of Ireland's best takeaway restaurant.
Manny's Fish & Chips claimed the top prize at this year's British Takeaway Awards (BTAs), which were hosted in partnership with Just Eat.
The North Belfast establishment edged out four other finalists this week to claim the top prize at a gala awards ceremony in London.
Dubbed “the Oscars of the takeaway world”, the awards celebrate the best takeaways across the North of Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales.
Now in their sixth year, the BTAs took on extra significance this year by recognising the hard work and resilience shown by takeaways during the pandemic.
Other local finalists included Pizza Guys (Andersonstown Road), Brown's Fish & Chips (Suffolk Road), Feeley's Fish & Chip Shop (Shaws Road), and Bonkas Desserts (Lisburn).
Manny's owner, Jane Adams, said her team are "delighted" to have won the award.
"It was our first time being named as finalists, so we went over to the awards but didn't think anything of it," she said.
"It has been a tough 18 months and we thought we would go and meet other people from the industry to see how they got on during the pandemic.
"We didn't expect to win, but it's absolutely brilliant.
"The girls and boys in the shop are absolutely over the moon.
"Takeaways haven't got it easy during the pandemic. We didn't know if we were going to have to pay people off, we didn't know if we could stay open, so it was a very bleak time for everyone.
"We closed for six weeks at the beginning to let staff adapt, but everyone couldn't wait to get back to work. We've adapted the shops too for masks and hand sanitisers and all that stuff, so with all the hard work the guys did they have to be commended.
"We love being part of a team, we all play a part and that's why it works. For the girls and the shop it's absolutely brilliant. We can't wait to tell them that they are the best. It's okay your boss telling you, but to actually be recognised as the best means loads."