Sutton Coldfield family chip shop celebrates £100,000 reopening after fire

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The Toumba family have run Blackwood Fish Bar in Sutton Coldfield for 22 years

They were forced to close for six months after a devastating fire broke out at their beloved family business which they’ve run for 22 years.

Now the Toumba family are delighted to announce that Blackwood Fish Bar in Streetly, Sutton Coldfield has reopened after a £100,000 refit. Andrea Toumba, aged 70, runs the Blackwood Road business with her husband Chris, aged 72, and older son Nick, aged 48. They threw open the doors at the fish and chip shop on Thursday (January 4).

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"We were closed for six months after the extractor fan caught fire despite getting the regulation checks every year. We heard a big bang in the fan at about 10.30am on July 8. The next thing we knew there were flames in the fryer. It was just one of those things. The fire brigade came within five minutes and put out the flames and smoke.

"Chris was inside when it happened, but he got out. Thankfully no-one was hurt. With the flames and smoke everything was ruined. We've had to invest in brand new equipment including a new fryer. The place has been completely refurbished and decorated.

Andrea Toumba of Blackwood Fish Bar, in Streetly is delighted to re-open the doorsAndrea Toumba of Blackwood Fish Bar, in Streetly is delighted to re-open the doors
Andrea Toumba of Blackwood Fish Bar, in Streetly is delighted to re-open the doors | Express and Star

"The customers have been telling us they missed us and are glad to see us open again which is nice to know. Unfortunately some of the staff weren't able to return, but we will recruit more over the next few months. We're still sorting things out through our insurers, but we are very happy to re-open after such a long time," Mrs Toumba, who grew up in Larnaca, Cyprus, explained.

The family also own the Wall Heath Fryer in Enville Road, Kingswinford which is operated by younger son Lucas, aged 40. Their first chip shop was a rented enterprise in Banbury which they ran for eight years in the 1980s.

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They also ran a chippy in Boldmere near Sutton Coldfield for 23 years alongside the Blackwood Road branch until 2019 when it was sold to new owners. "I have been running businesses for 50 years and I will carry on as long as I can," the grandmother-of-four added.

She said these days fish and chips, and chicken and doner kebabs were the most popular dishes and attracted equal numbers of orders followed by 'specials'. Blackwood Fish Bar is open Mondays to Saturdays 11.30am-2pm and 4.30pm-9pm. It is the second chippy to open up within days in the area after brand new business Dr Vinegars was open in Dudley Road, Oldbury on Wednesday.

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