A BUSINESSMAN has said he "was shocked" and "lost for words" after finding out his chip shop was voted the 'plaice' to be by loyal customers.

Andy's Plaice Fish and Chips, based in Clacton, has been named as the winner of the Gazette's Favourite Chip Shop Award for 2023.

The eatery was unveiled as the winner after members of the public were asked to nominate their favourite fish and chip shop.

Seven chippies were shortlisted before the public were once again asked to go to the polls to decide on their ultimate favourite.

Andy's Plaice Fish and Chips, which run by owner Andrew Yates, was eventually crowned as the champion.

Speaking after his victory Mr Yates said: "I was amazed to have won the award for 2023, having been nominated before.

"This year I decided to advertise in the shop for votes and I was shocked when I had the call to say we are crowned winners of 2023, I was lost for words."

After working for his dad, Mr Yates decided it was time to venture out on his own and become the fourth generation of the family to find success within the chippy trade. 

Andy’s Plaice opened in May 2016 and to this day continues to use the "best products possible", along with "fresh fish from local seas for great taste".

Mr Yates has now thanked his dedicated staff, family and loyal customers, attributing the shops's success to them.

He said: "I would like to say a big thank you to all customers for their support and votes and our staff for all their hard work to get to this.

"I’m grateful to my dad Stephen Yates for teaching me everything and passing his experience on to myself which I dedicate this award to."

The other shortlisted chips shops were Happy Fries in Eight Ash Green, John's Fish Bar in Colchester, Paul's Plaice in Heybridge, Rainbow Fish Bar in Earls Colne, The Chip Inn in Maylandsea and Yates Fish Bar in Walton.