BRADFORD THRIVE ON FIVE
At the final meeting of the judges at the close of
National Curry Week®, Bradford was named Curry Capital of
Britain® for an amazing fifth time in succession - making six in total.
Close on their heels was old curry rival Glasgow,
the curry capital of Scotland, who were just five points behind, with
top southern challenger, Brighton, taking third spot.
'Winning Curry Capital of Britain is a long and
arduous process,' explained founder Peter Grove, 'and all the
restaurant teams have to be commended on their efforts.
Unfortunately, some councils take the event more seriously than
others, which means fewer points in the final analysis.'
Points are awarded to each of the teams, which
includes the judges' scores for each team of four restaurants, health
and hygiene from Scores on the Doors, public votes, a council
submission and finally, any fundraising for charity is also taken
'The underlying concept of the event is Community
Cohesion through Curry - not necessarily which city has the best
restaurants,' explained Peter. 'I realise some restaurateurs will
feel aggrieved,' he continued, 'but council support is part of the
process and if that is not there, there is little we can do.'
Leicester managed to pip self-styled curry capital
Birmingham to fourth place, with Birmingham fifth and London South
and London Central joint sixth. The two London teams also achieved
the excellent record of being the only 100% health & hygiene
scorers amongst all the teams.
A full list of the places for 2015 is available on
the event website, at www.currycapitalofbritain.co.uk
With Bradford seeming to have cracked the winning
code for claiming the title, they will be sorry to hear that this is
the last year that it will be contested under the present rules. Next
year Curry Capital of Britain® will be going international, with
preliminary events to determine the Curry Capitals of England,
Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The successful home nation
teams will then compete against each other, as well as London to
determine who will be the Curry Capital of Britain® and go on to
compete against representatives from other countries for an
The battle between England and Scotland in
particular is certain to be hotly contested, as each is very proud of
their curry industry. In this year's event not only did Glasgow come
a close second with a very solid presentation, but Edinburgh was
placed 8th and new entrant Aberdeen, 10th.
When told about the plans for the 14th Curry
Capital of Britain®, Patricia Tillotson, on behalf of Bradford
said, 'bring it on!'
The 18th National Curry Week® took place from
12-18 October 2015, supported by Sainsbury's, Amira Rice, Bhai Cider
and Kingfisher Premium Lager Beer.
Curry Capital of Britain® 2015 has not only
produced some amazing restaurants, underlining the high standard of
curry restaurants in UK, but also team efforts by some of the
councils to support those restaurants. Even better is the fact that
this event alone has made its biggest ever contribution to the
overall charity fund-raising of National Curry Week®, with over
£6,000 going to a variety of charities including one single
donation of £2,000 to the Glasgow Lord Provost's Malawi Fund by
Customer's Restaurant of the Year 2015, Koolba.
Once again the judging proved just how close this
event can get and Bradford and Glasgow in particular are now so well
organised in their efforts, it makes the decision on the eventual
outcome even more difficult. The judges did feel, however, that
Bradford reflected the central message of the event best with its
community and team involvement over Glasgow's 'People Make Glasgow'
submission, although Glasgow did score slightly higher in the
Brighton put up a very spirited challenge in only
its third year and surprised many by again being in the top three.
There was excellent support from the restaurants and local PR man
George Shaw, although the bid was a little lacking in other areas.
Leicester provided one of its best challenges since
they won in 2007, beating rival Birmingham into fifth place.
Birmingham scored the second highest restaurant marks after London
South and London Central but unfortunately received little council
support. The same applies to the two London teams which both only
dropped two points each out of a possible forty four.
Peter Grove hands the
new 2014 trophy to Patricia Tillotson of Bradford Council with
representatives of Kiplings, Zaara's, Aakash and Shimla Spice
BRADFORD RAISE MONEY WITH A TEA TWIST
(October 2014)Peter Grove (right) accepts a
donation raise at a new Indian Tea with a Twist event by Bradford
from Lord Mayor Councillor Mike Gibbons and Patricia Tillotson for
The 3 'B's take the honours in Curry Capital event
After six months of voting and investigation, the
thirteen judges of Curry Capital of Britain sponsored by
hungryhouse.com, awarded the honours for 2014 to the 3 'B's -
BRADFORD (the winners) - Brighton (Runners-up) - Birmingham (Third).
This means that Bradford have taken the title an
amazing record breaking four years in a row despite the great efforts
of other cities to beat them. Peter Grove, organiser and founder of
the event as part of 17th National Curry Week, was full of praise for
the outstanding effort of the Yorkshire city with their score
increasing nearly 9% on last year's total. "It is as if they
have found the magic formula," he said. "Of all the
competing cities they have understood the underlying message of the
event to promote cohesion where there was division and have used
curry as a bonding agent to bring different aspects of Bradford
society together." "As well as curry lovers and
restaurateurs, they managed to bring together local businesses such
as Lishman's of Ilkley and their balti pies and Keelham's Farm Shop
with their tasty Tipsy Pig Ale, hotels and even the air cadets."
" They managed to portray the local pride they have in all
things 'Bradford' so much so that we will be using their approach as
a blueprint for next year."
Tourism Manager Patricia Tillotson and her team and
the four restaurants representing Bradford, Kiplings, Shimla Spice,
Aakash and Zaara's, worked hard throughout the year to get their
message across and showed an amazing example of how people can work
together where they would normally never do so.
"No doubt there will be several complaints as
to why a certain city has not done better but it can come down to
their official health and safety standards or, more often than not,
the lack of input from the cities themselves." "We do not
put rules on the submissions required or expect it to be costly but
in some cases councils could not be bothered to send out the tourist
material expected by an ordinary enquirer, thus letting their
restaurants down." "The lack of effort of some cities is
If you are looking for the healthiest place to have
your curry then Bradford and Nottingham head your list with 100%
scores, London Central (Tamarind, Quilon, Chakra, Painted Heron)
received the highest inspection marks from the judges and Babur in
South London was, once again, the only restaurant to achieve maximum
points. New to the top three, Brighton moved rapidly up the list from
12th last year with the support of the council and local PR man
George Shaw, which would have please the Father of the British Curry
Scene Sake Dean Mohammed who opened the first curry restaurant in
London in 1809 but later lived and died in Brighton.
Birmingham moved up one place to third but still
have yet to mount the major challenge they seem capable of and
Leicester re-affirmed itself is one of the best places to enjoy curry
with a solid 4th place. Newcastle were placed last this year because
one of the team restaurants closed during the judging period for
renovation this effecting the marking and Wolverhampton slipped down
the list as the local marketing team were no longer able to continue
the fantastic support of previous years. The presentation of the
award will take place in Bradford at a date to be advised.
CURRY CAPITAL OF BRITAIN 2014 - THE TEAMS
Curry Capital of Britain 2013 was a victim of its
own success in that not only is the city determined to win for a
record smashing fourth time in a row but more and more Bradford
restaurants want to join the team of four to represent their city.
Said Peter Grove, organiser of Curry Capital of
Britain for National Curry Week in October, "the voting public
really seem to have the idea of what we are looking for. In the past
they may have given their vote frivolously, but now they are curry
connoisseurs with the result that the city teams are stronger than ever.
With the team details only just hot off the press,
Bradford council is already actively promoting the city, but they
need not think they will have it all their own way with Leicester,
Birmingham, Cardiff, parts of London and even relative newcomer
Brighton showing great enthusiasm.
"With Glasgow side-lined due to a really
fantastic Commonwealth Games," continued Grove, "the
possibilities are really open for Bradford to win yet again or a
totally unsuspected city to receive the title for 2014".
"It is all down to the judges and those
valuable public votes".
Teams for 2014
Leicester: Shimla Pinks, Curry Fever, Swatlands,
Cuisine of India
Leeds: Sheesh Mahal, Akbars(Eastgate), Aagrah
Wolverhampton: Rickshaw, Masalla Club, The Bilash, Indigo
Cardiff: Moksh, Purple Poppadom, Spiceberry, Mint
Birmingham: Puskar, Lasan, Punjabi Rasoi, Itihaas
Bradford: Kiplings, Shimla Spice, Aakash, Zaaras
Sheffield: Cutlers Spice, Nawaab, Akhtars, Zaras
Newcastle: Rupali, Valley Junction 397, Solomon
Edinburgh: Britannia Spice, Mithas, Vinyasa, Mother
Nottingham: Curry Lounge, Cumin, Tamatanga, Mogal-e-Azam
Northampton: Memsaab,Café Saffron, Lazeez, Tamarind
Liverpool: Mayur, East z East, Yukti, Gulshan
Brighton: Chilli Pickle, Indian Summer, Bombay
Oxford: Malikas, Qumins, Spice Lounge, Aziz
Manchester: Royal Nawaab, Mughli, East z East, Zouk
London East: Café Spice, Cinnamon Kitchen,
Bengal Lancer, Jalalabad
London South: Bengal Clipper, Cinnamon Culture,
Babur, Chak 89
London West: Atithi, Brilliant, Tamara Lounge, Moti Mahal
London North: Masala Zone(Islington), Bombay Flame,
Roots, Riverside Lounge
London Central: Chakra, Tamarind, Quilon, Painted Heron
The restaurants will now be visited by one of the
team of national judges to submit a report contributing to that
cities aspirations of winning the title for 2014. The public can
still show their support by viting for their city on firstname.lastname@example.org.
PRESS RELEASE (28 October 2013)
BRADFORD RECEIVE THE TROPHY FOR THIRD YEAR RUNNING
The team from Bradford travelled to London
yesterday to accept the Curry Capital of Britain 2013 trophy from
Shane Lake of sponsors hungryhouse.co.uk.
This is the third consecutive year Bradford has won
the title putting them level with Glasgow on four wins each. The
event is the showpiece of National Curry Week, now in its 16th year,
and it was celebrated along with other awards at a special
Celebration of Curry cruise on The New Southern Belle on the River Thames.
Patricia Tillotson accepted the trophy on behalf of
Bradford council and the restaurant team of Akbars, Kiplings, Shimla
Spice and Omar Khan's and a special award was made to the Bradford
Air Cadets who set a new Poppadomathon World Record and raised
£200 for charity.
Peter Grove, founder and organiser of the event
said, "this curry cruise is a fitting end to a fantastic year
during which the British curry family has once again shown its
generosity and fun loving nature. Bradford once again ticked all the
boxes with the judges showing exemplary teamwork, innovation and fun".
Although most pledges for the event are still to be
honoured, Mr Grove was able to hand over a first cheque to Find Your
Feet, the official charity, with the expectation of many more to
come. All the winners for 2013 were :
Curry Capital of Britain - Bradford
Customer Restaurant of the Year - Bilash Wolverhampton
Best Signature Dish (Traditional) - Cinnamon
Best Signature Dish (Innovative) - Navin
Bhatia Dockmasters London E14
Curry Pub of the Year - The Vine West Bromwich
hungryhouse Takeaway of the Year - Sizzlers Pizza
& Balti Hut Bradford
Best Indian Restaurant of the Year - Babur London SE23
PRESS RELEASE (1st May 2013)
MORE CITIES THAN EVER COMPETE TO 'CURRY OFF' TITLE
The Curry Capital of Britain 2013 will have two new
cities competing for the coveted title with Brighton and Oxford
joining the fray
Cities invited to compete for 2013 by the organisers
are :London East ; London North ; London South ; London West ; London
Central ; Birmingham ; Leicester ; Cardiff ; Bradford ; Manchester ;
Sheffield ; Newcastle ; Edinburgh ; Glasgow ; Liverpool ; Leeds ;
Wolverhampton ; Nottingham ; Northampton ; Brighton ; Oxford.
Last year over a quarter of a million curry fans voted
for their favourite restaurants and city and the response is expected
to be even greater with the active support of lead event sponsors hungryhouse.co.uk
The event is unique as it involves first the public, who vote via
email@example.com, their local council website or the restaurants
themselves. Once a team of restaurants have been voted to represent
each city they move on to the city voting stage whilst the judges
prepare their reports on the restaurants and the council or marketing
body make a submission as to why their city should win.
The event introduces an element of excitement and
pride to restaurants and curry fans alike and the competition between
cities is sometimes intense. Last year Bradford won narrowly for a
second year from four times winner Glasgow but early voting suggests
there may be some dark horses this year.
"I hope the media, councils and restaurants,
indeed any body that has direct contact with the curry eating public
encourages them to vote and make this year's event even more
exciting," said Peter Grove who organises the annual event on
behalf of The Federation of Specialist Restaurants.
11th Curry Capital of Britain is part of 16th National
Curry Week (7-14th October) which exists to promote the cuisine and
the importance of our ethnic communities whilst raising much needed
funds for the poor and malnourished. This annual event whose lead
supporter will be Patak's for the third consecutive year, has
something for all Britain's 27 million curry fans whether dining in
or out, in a restaurant, pub, club or home.