CIRENCESTER butchers Jesse Smith & W.J. Castle was crowned Processor of the Year at the Meat & Poultry Processing Awards 2017.

As well as picking up the top accolade of the night, it also won Small Processor of the Year at the ceremony held at Hilton Manchester Deansgate.

The judges praised the Black Jack Street butchers for its growth over the last 12 months, as well as its focus on local produce and apprentice schemes.

David Hawes, director of Jesse Smith & W.J. Castle, said: “This is a really big award for us.

“For such a small business in the small town of Cirencester it is a great thing to win.”

Last year, Jesse’s Farm Shop, on Love Lane, was opened to compliment the butchers – established in 1808, making it one of the oldest in the country.

The Love Lane shop has a state-of-the-art meat preparation and distribution facility, a production kitchen, catering department, retail shop and the Butcher Block Café.

It was awarded membership of the national Butchers Q Guild in June.