A Perthshire butcher with the local community at its heart was a cut above at a recent national awards night.
TH Stevenson & Sons, whose shop is in Stanley, recently headed to the glitzy ceremony of Scotland’s Business Awards.
There was delight – and a touch of shock – when their name was proudly called out as winners of the Best Butcher category.
The family-run shop is in its 12th year and is fronted up by passionate butcher Tom Stevenson, who has been in the trade for the best part of 30 years.
“It was a big surprise,” said Tom (49). “We didn’t expect anything like this being such a small business.
“We’ve had a lot of people coming into the shop congratulating us on the award.
“They have either seen the news on Facebook or our certificate which now sits on the counter.
“Our customers are getting good quality when they come in and we like to think the service is good.”
Tom attended the awards night at the Doubletree by Hilton, delayed from last year, with shop assistant Susan Scott but also made sure to turn the spotlight on hard-working colleagues Caireen Paterson and Lauren Ferrier.
“The girls work very hard and are pleasant over the counter – that makes a difference,” he continued.
The first stage of the award process was anonymous – with TH Stevenson & Sons put forward to Scotland’s Business Awards and nominated for the Perth and Kinross local awards.
A visit from a representative of the organisation, who interviewed Tom and got some details about the business, would follow before the time arrived to attend the national finals.
There were award categories covering everything from food, health and beauty, hospitality and customer service to business services, holiday parks and florists.
Bright lights, indoor fireworks and the TH Stevenson & Sons name on the big screen made for a glamorous – and most enjoyable – evening.
“There haven’t been many opportunities to celebrate recently,” shop assistant Susan explained.
“Four butchers businesses from across Scotland were announced as the finalists in our category.
“We were delighted to find out that we had won the national award –especially as our seats were at a table near the back of a room with over 500 people in attendance.
“We had thought that they would have the winners up near the front!”
The Stevenson family farms – where all of the beef and much of the lamb came from – were started by Tom’s grandfather.
Balmacolly and Rashielea farms are currently farmed by his father Tom and uncles Robert and Leslie.
The farm to fork ethos is important to the Stevenson family, with customers being assured of the provenance of their purchases.
The hard work continued through the pandemic with Tom determined to serve the local community in the best possible way.
“We didn’t really know what to expect but it actually turned out quite well,” he said.
“We got a lot of household custom. There were door-to-door deliveries and we’re still doing home deliveries. We haven’t given that up.”
Now it’s all about going from strength to strength.
“We need to keep up the good standards and not let them drop,” a delighted Tom concluded.