Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 8°C

ESTD 1874 Search

The pigs are coming. Find out more about

Pigs Gone Wild

here.

West Suffolk: ‘Mick the Chip’ Ruddy finally packs up his fish and chips van business

09:00 23 May 2014

Mick Ruddy is retiring from his fish and chips van business after 45 years. Mick is pictured at his home in Hepworth.

Mick Ruddy is retiring from his fish and chips van business after 45 years. Mick is pictured at his home in Hepworth.

Archant

When Michael - ‘Mick the Chip’ - Ruddy first started out in the mobile fish and chips business a portion of cod and chips would set you back two and tuppence.

Forty-five years later he has decided to take his fish and chips van out of action and finally enjoy a well-deserved rest as he embarks on his retirement.

Mr Ruddy, 64, from Hepworth, will be missed by his loyal customers in the areas that he covered on his rounds, including Thurston, Bildeston and Mendlesham.

He said: “I want to thank all my customers for their support over the years. When I told them I was packing up they looked at me in amazement. They bought me wine, chocolates. I even got a joint of beef.”

Mr Ruddy said by the time he was aged 20 he had already had 13 jobs. Then he got into the fish and chips business and has never looked back.

He said he started working for Peter Harvey, who was based in Diss, and ended up buying the business from him when he developed a bad back.

Mr Ruddy, who has five children and two step-children, said his working hours used to be from 7am through to 1am the next day, but in recent years he had cut them back.

The conditions in winter could also be a challenge, he said, adding how if he got caught in a snowdrift he would have to stay in the van overnight.

He said years ago there were two coal fires on each van, but there came a time when he had to switch from coal to gas. He said his fifth van (which is pictured) used to be a library van years ago and he converted it himself.

For Mr Ruddy the best part of the job was meeting his customers.

Peter Knott and his wife Nicola, from Rattlesden, said they had bought fish and chips from Mr Ruddy all their lives. They said they would greatly miss the service and wished him “a long and happy retirement”.

Mr Knott said: “We both grew up round here. I’m in my 40s now, but when I was 15/16 I used to pop down to the end of the airfield and catch him there to get the family’s fish and chips.”

Mr Ruddy said he had already been offered another job - in fish and chips. But he said: “I said I have finished. I have had enough of it.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Suffolk fisherman Harry Simper

A young Suffolk fisherman has netted himself a national award.

The Sorcerer's Apprentice. Photo: David Tett

From half-term fun and open gardens to the Suffolk Show and air displays, there’s plenty to see and do in Suffolk during the school holidays.

John Popplewell with his 45lb stingray

A Clacton fisherman caught a “monster” stingray weighing nearly three and a half stone on an Essex beach this week – and filmed it all on his new GoPro.

Essex fire crews.

Firefighters attending a blaze in the basement of a Harwich home initially thought someone was trapped in the house.

A 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO outside Heveningham Hall. Picture: Cameron Maynard/Aperto Photos.

An 18th Century Suffolk mansion has announced plans to host a gathering of rare classic cars as part of celebrations marking the 20th anniversary of its annual country fair.

BBC's Springwatch has arrived in Minsmere Nature reserve for the third year.
Presenters Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan.

A new Springwatch star is likely to be born at RSPB Minsmere in the next three weeks to capture the hearts of millions of viewers in the same way that a hapless little fish did during last year’s immensely popular BBC nature showcase series.

Gina Long celebrating with the family on receiving her MBE

Three community heroes from Suffolk were honoured for their selfless work and made an MBE by Prince Charles.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24