Wednesday 10 October 2018 1:30 AM UTC
LONDON Oct 10: These are the eateries crowned the best Asian restaurants and takeaways in the country.
The first ever Asian Restaurant and Takeaway Awards (ARTA) paid tribute to the finest British curry houses in a ceremony held at The O2 Arena, London.
TV chef Ainsley Harriott joined BBC news presenter Samantha Simmonds to congratulate the businesses at the fore of a £4billion industry that Prime Minister Theresa May described as an ‘immensely important and popular part of British life’.
The winners stretch from east London’s bustling Brick Lane to the small Scottish town of Loanhead and the full list is below:
Lifetime Achievement Award: Dr. Siraj Ali (owner of The Maharaja in Benfleet, Essex)
National Champions of Champions: Curry Palace (Cottenham, Cambridge)
National Chef of the Year: Mushfiqur Rahman (chef at Bhaijaan’s Bombay Kitchen in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham)
National Newcomer of the Year: Tamasha (Lindfield, Haywards Heath, West Sussex)
Best Thai Restaurant & Takeaway: Bangkok Lounge (Harpenden, Hertfordshire)
Best of Brick Lane: Masala Restaurant (east London)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in Scotland: The Radhuni (Loanhead, Midlothian)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in Northern Ireland: Bangla (Bangor)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in Wales: The Grand Sultan (Port Talbot)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in South East: The New Curry Centre (Horsham, West Sussex)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in East Anglia: Cam Spice (Cambridge)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in South Central: Spice Lounge (Staines-upon-Thames, Surrey)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in South West: Spice Club (Bridgwater, Somerset)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in Kent: Taj Barming (Maidstone, Kent)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in North London: Bayleaf Restaurant (Whetstone, London)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in East London: Grand Trunk Road (Woodford, London)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in North East: The Vine Indian Cuisine (Sheffield)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in North West: Hot Chilli Restaurant (Bolton, Greater Manchester)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in East Midlands: The Spice Lounge (Rushden, Northamptonshire)
Best Restaurant & Takeaway in West Midlands: Royal Bengal (Coventry, West Midlands)
Thai Chef of the Year: Royal Thai Cuisine
Mrs May said of the ceremony: ‘These prestigious awards are an excellent opportunity to celebrate the craft of the most talented chefs and highly skilled service staff responsible for producing exceptional British Asian Cuisine.
‘Asian cuisine has certainly become an immensely important and popular part of British life. Its success is owed, in no small part, to the talented restaurateurs and chefs who are being nominated for and receiving awards this year, and it is crucial that we recognise, promote and celebrate this.’
Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable attended the ceremony on September 30 and said: ‘The purpose of this evening is to celebrate the achievements of a very important industry.
‘This is a four billion pound industry, which employs over a hundred thousand people, and makes a massive contribution to the British economy and to British society.
‘But it’s also about saving the industry, not just celebrating it. I know that in recent years we’ve been losing two restaurants a week – the pressures on the high street, the pressures on the industry are very great, and you’re going to need maximum political support in order to pull through a crisis in the industry.’
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