Wetherby Whaler^s VIP day
Article Date: 2014-03-07
The famous and original Wetherby Whaler in Wetherby welcomed MP for Elmet and Rothwell, Alec Shelbrooke, and representatives of the community for a special charity event to mark the official opening of its newly extended Wetherby restaurant.
The event was a triple celebration:
• £200,000 investment in the restaurant, which included extending the premises to cater for 90 diners rather than its original 60, creating four new jobs
• 25th anniversary of the restaurant, which was the original Wetherby Whaler first purchased by Phillip and Janine Murphy in 1989
• 1.5 million portions of fish and chips sold!
A host of VIP guests, including The Mayor of Wetherby Councillor Alan Lamb, Leeds Rhinos rugby stars Tom Briscoe and Brad Singleton, Councillor John Procter and Councillor Gerald Wilkinson, joined Alec Shelbrooke MP and members of the local community for renowned Wetherby Whaler fish and chips to the sound of traditional sea songs by shanty choir, Kimber’s Men, in the extended and refurbished restaurant.
As part of the investment, the restaurant, which now employs 25 members of staff, underwent a full refurbishment, including the installation of a platform lift and a new state of the art kitchen.
The event raised £1,000 which will be donated to The Fisherman’s Mission, a charity that provides emergency and welfare support to fishermen and their families.
The Wetherby Whaler is a leading player in the popular fish and chip restaurant and take-away market in Yorkshire. In addition to Wetherby, it has restaurants and takeaways in York, Pudsey, Wakefield and Guiseley.
Janine Murphy, co-owner of the Wetherby Whaler, said: “Everyone had a great time at the event to celebrate our investment and to mark our anniversary and we would like to thank everyone for coming along, especially the VIP guests.
“The restaurant will always hold a special place in our hearts as it is the first Wetherby Whaler that we opened and we think it is looking great having left its 80s look behind!
“I’m really pleased with the amount that was raised for The Fisherman’s Mission as the charity does great work supporting UK fishermen and we wanted to give something back to those who make serving our fish and chips possible.”
MP for Elmet and Rothwell, Alec Shelbrooke, said: “I would like to congratulate Phillip and Janine on the investment they’ve made in the town. The restaurant employs 15 full time and 10 part time members of staff, which is a massive contribution to the economy in Wetherby.”
Tracey Stephens, Superintendent of The Fisherman’s Mission in Hull, said: “I would like to say a big thank you to the Wetherby Whaler for supporting The Fisherman’s Mission. Following a very harsh winter and recent severe storms, the charity is in desperate need of donations to help our fisherman and the £1,000 that was raised at the event will be put to excellent use.”