Wilsons Butchers -Where it all comes from

I am the egg man, I am the egg man

I am the egg man, I am the egg man

Hello again, I can’t believe that by the time you will be reading this Christmas will be just around the corner, but more of that later.    I was just tidying up the meat counter display the other day when a customer asked if we had any outdoor reared “Happy” pork. I couldn’t reply quick enough to tell her all our pigs are outdoor reared and I felt happy that we were selling the type of meat she wanted. But I was not ready for her reply, the customer asked me why we did not give this  information on the tickets. I was  a bit stunned, I suppose, because we talk about it and work with  the meat all the time, we have actually been taking it for granted that customers know this information. Over time, we hopefully attract new customers and it’s easy to forget that a lot of our newer  customers, who have started visiting us since we refitted the shop won’t have ever seen some of the newsletters we produced in the past, or seen the slideshow that we used to show on our in-store screen giving this information. So we have decided to be more informative and hopefully provide more of the facts people want to know.

This can only be of benefit to the shop because the lady who asked me the question went on to tell me that “She had been spending a fortune in one of the larger supermarkets because they said they sold outdoor reared pork”.

It made me laugh the other night when I saw an advertisement on the TV showing a farmer with a small quaint farm rearing a few bronze turkeys and then making out that he is supplying a whole supermarket chain! It just doesn’t happen!

So here it is, a rundown of where our meat comes from. We now source our beef from Tony Lawn, from Barkston Ash. Tony is doing a first rate job with his cattle and is supplying us with ‘Heifers’ with just the right amount of fat covering (“Finish”) and at just the right size to suit our high standards and our customers requirements. Too lean and the meat lacks taste and succulence, too fat and customers are put off. If the animals are too large, then cuts such as sirloin steak come out too big and expensive or it has to be cut too thin to keep the price down. After delivery we always hang the hindquarter beef for at least two further weeks in our maturation fridge for that extra flavour and tenderness. Tony knows this and is always in the shop buying his own beef from us!!


outdoor reared pork

As I have already said, our pork comes from outdoor reared pigs from Woolhouse & Son from Church Farm in Ravenfield and this ensures that the pork is firm and flavourful with a dry skin that will make excellent crackling. This is in contrast to intensively reared pork that is tasteless and full of water with skin that won’t crackle no matter what you do to it!

Our Lambs are all free range from the Yorkshire Dales or Wolds and are usually bought for us at local auction marts. This minimizes travelling time and reduces stress to the animals. These pastures are some of the best in the country so it is no wonder Yorkshire lamb is in so much demand.

Our whole chickens are sourced from T. Soanes and son at Middleton on the Wolds and are brought directly to us twice a week to give us a continuous fresh supply. Our chicken portions including breast fillets come from Peter Gradon  at Northowram Nr Halifax. Peter has been a very good friend of ours now for many years and only supplies us with the best British chicken.

For our turkeys, for boneless breast joints, roast turkey on the deli counter and our Christmas Barn reared birds, we use David Heap at Hade Edge near Holmfirth. Davids’s turkeys are always well looked after and well fed giving them a nice fat covering on the breasts that helps to baste the meat during cooking to keep the meat moist. This is a real family business,  demonstrated by the fact David’s wife Elaine usually delivers the turkeys!

Our delicious Free Range Eggs are reared for us by Ian Taylor from Burton Leonard. Ian does such a brilliant job with his hens that it earned him the award for Best Rural Business in 2013. We sell Ian’s Medium and Extra Large eggs. Don’t be surprised if you get some double yolkers!!! And even if you don’t, I’m sure you’ll be impressed by the lovely yellow yokes. You really can tell the difference.

We source our game, which is available at a very reasonable price at the moment, from Yorkshire Game Farm and Andy always looks after us and is forever banging at our back door delivering a fresh supply. (It is amazing what a few hot pork pies can do!!)

So there you have it, a rundown of our  suppliers. Look out for this information on our tickets in future.

Getting back to Christmas, we are now giving out our Christmas brochure complete with order form so please pick yours up now and have a browse. If you can’t get in to the shop you can also view it on our website at www.wilsonsbutchers.co.uk just click on the red bauble in the top right hand corner of the home screen.  Also this year, as well as giving you the chance to place your full Christmas order, we are going to offer an express collection point to the back of the shop for pick up only of complete orders paid for in advance. To make this possible we have item priced all the items in the Christmas

Brochure so you will know in advance the total cost of your order, thus enabling full payment if required. As usual we will be baking our popular large pork pies all through the night to make sure we don’t sell out, so there is no need to pre-order them unless they are part of a complete order.

If anyone is looking for a nice Christmas   present for a would be chef, we have just the thing. We are selling a selection of the knives we use ourselves. These are the the real thing at a reasonable price.

You’re probably aware Christmas is our busiest time of the year. If we are up to our necks in turkeys and the like, we’d just like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and also to thank you all for your  support and kind words since the refitt. It’s been a monumental year with winning Britains Best Butchers Shop so soon after all the upheavel but it’s been worth it and it’s been a real pleasure to see new customers as well as our regulars.

Happy Christmas & Bon Appetit  

 John & Andrew Green         


Happy bChristmas from all the staff at Wilsons.

Happy Christmas from all the staff at Wilsons.


‘Meat’ the Staff



This issue we would like to introduce you to Doreen (left) who works in our bakery. Doreen has been there longer than some of the machinery, in fact we think she must be an antique, although I hasten to add, a priceless one.  Well into her seventies, she has retired at least twice in the past but keeps coming back.  Doreen says it keeps her young working with the younger generations and she helps keep them on track with a bit of her wisdom.  Before joining us Doreen worked for Wildblood and White making their pies, so there is not much about pies that she doesn’t know.

As I write this Doreen is rather ill and being treated in St James’s Hospital, so we send her our love, wish her a speedy recovery and hope to see her very soon. When leaving on an evening,  Doreen always says “See you in the Morning, ‘Pause’ all being well”. Well, we hope we keep seeing her for a long time to come.




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One Comment

  1. Nigel Redburn says:

    An open and honest article, how many businesses would dare put their suppliers on line. That shows confidence by a first class butchers and deli. Lovely pork pies as well!

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