It’s National Butchers Week this week, so we thought we’d take the opportunity to take our hats off to our two master butchers: Lee and Ray. Between them they have over 75 years of butchery experience, having developed their skills at independent and supermarket butchery counters before coming to Stansted Park Farm Shop.

Their experience show in the range of skills that they have, and which many butchery counters no longer display. Our wild venison, pork, lamb, and goat all come in as whole carcass. As a result, we can tell you exactly where it has come from, usually directly from local farms and estates.  We get hindquarters of beef as those are the cuts that our customers want, but again, these come with passports so that we can tell you which farm it was reared from.  We can only do this because Lee and Ray can break down the carcass into individual cuts, which vary according to the season, or what’s on-trend. It’s a rare skill that we are extremely lucky to have.

There is a huge amount of work that goes on behind the scenes to ensure that the counter looks great when our doors open.  They often start work at 4am, and work non-stop doing very physical work.  They manage to do this while serving customers politely, helpfully, and with a constant smile. Lee’s paperwork is always meticulously filled out (5 stars every time!), the counters are always thoroughly cleaned each day and beautifully presented.

And this year they have excelled themselves, as their workload doubled during the lockdowns.  They have taken it all in their stride, maintained standards, kept calm and cheerful, and ensured that customers keep coming back for excellent quality, great-tasting meat.

So, from Sam and me, a huge thank you to Lee and Ray for their superb work in creating a huge draw for the farm shop with their magnificent butchery counter.