Pie-makers launch expanded business at Old Dalby

Phil and Kath Walmsley in the new tea room at their Nice Pie catering business at Old Dalby EMN-150720-124256001
Phil and Kath Walmsley in the new tea room at their Nice Pie catering business at Old Dalby EMN-150720-124256001
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An exotic pie making company has had such an explosive increase in business since being on a Jamie Oliver TV show it has taken on new staff and opened a new farmshop and tea house.

Nice Pie, a family business based at Old Dalby, enjoyed success in a succession of prestigious national industry shows but after they appeared on Jamie and Jimmy’s Friday Night Feast in February an avalanche of regular orders began coming in.

Jamie Oliver (left) and Friday Night Feast co-presenter Jimmy Doherty (right) with the Walmsley family, from left, Phil, Aimi and Kath at the Old Dalby base of Nice Pie EMN-150720-131028001

Jamie Oliver (left) and Friday Night Feast co-presenter Jimmy Doherty (right) with the Walmsley family, from left, Phil, Aimi and Kath at the Old Dalby base of Nice Pie EMN-150720-131028001

Phil and Katharine Walmsley and daughter Aimi, who produce specialist food such as squirrel pies as well as traditional Melton pork pies, have worked around the clock to cope and decided to expand their premises at Gorse Farm on Six Hills Lane because it was no longer big enough.

They held a special family launch event to show off their new facilities which was very well attended.

Phil said: “We have outgrown our farmshop - if you got three or four couples in there before they just didn’t have room to move.

“The new facility is much better and allows us to get everyone in who wants to come in.

“We’ve been working 130-hour weeks to keep up with the business since the Jamie Oliver show.

“Being on that show has basically put us five years ahead of where we were only last year.”

A former poultry shed which used to house 18,000 birds has been knocked down to make way for a car park, another shed has been converted into a farmshop and there is a new children’s play area and outdoor seating for visitors.

Chef and TV presenter Andy Bates, who has become a friend of the Walmsleys, attended the opening of the new facilities on Wednesday.

Phil added: “Weekends are very busy. On Saturday our first customer arrived at 10am and the last one left at 5.15pm and we get a lot of cyclists dropping in for a snack. I said to Kath the other day ‘we’ve created a monster here’. We are lucky to be in a prime spot with regards to food because there is much traffic commuting into Melton and the Vale of Belvoir.”