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Bessie Arderns


Bill
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When Warburton?s pie shop closed, we had a thread running here that brought in posts from as far afield as Australia such was the popularity of this unique pie shop. Now it seems another one of our notable independents Bessie Ardern?s who have several shops around the town, might be due to close in the next couple of weeks.

 

There?s a notice up in their Willis Street shop and the staff there were all quite upset, as most had worked there for many years. Maybe this is a sign of the times, healthy options maybe or perhaps competition from the likes of the ?pound pie shop??

 

Bill :)

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Rather embarrased to say that I didn't know there was such thing as Betty Ardens pie shops in Warrington and I have no idea where Willis Street is :oops: Are their pies good and where are their other shops as I'm feeling peckish now.

 

I would imagine overheads such as gas/elec/rent/business rates etc make it near impossible for a small or family run food business to compete with the big stores and like you say the pound pie shops.

 

Sign of the times I guess.

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Willis Street is the area just off Manchester Road near St Elphin?s park and that?s where the bakery has been for as long as I can remember. More recently though, the business has expanded and now has several shops dotted about the town and they?ve been featured several times in the Worldwide magazine.

 

The original Betty Arden only retired from the business a few years ago at a ripe old age. I think it?s a family business and I?m sure that back then her son was running the show but seems now it?s the grandchildren who are in the driving seat.

 

Bill :)

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Was only talking to the father in law about ardens pies on monday. My dad went there every saturday for pies. It is one of those places that If you haven't been at least three or four times you would have difficulty finding it.

 

Last time I went my Mother wanted some meat pies and asked me if I wanted a pastie. I said get two as I was feeling hungry. They only had one which was a good thing really as given the size of it I would never have managed to eat two of them.

 

Oddly enough my father in laws surname is Willis.

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Ardens pies are perhaps not as good as they used to be and are quite dear.

 

We were always a fan of Ardens but, say, pukka pies from Morrisons are much cheaper - and my good lady and myself would argue, that bit tastier.

 

At the risk of boredom, when I was a cycle patrol officer, I used to get pies and currant buns from all over town and hide them in my cape over the handlebars.

 

Warburtons in Orford lane were perhaps best. Nicksons in Bridge street - until they got done. Currall's, Walkers in Pinners brow and Cissie Keefes's were also top notch. A passing policeman could also collect a free pie from Bayley Isaacs.

 

Happy days

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