A Dalry family butcher shop is hailing its most successful Christmas in its 36-year history, boosted by a raft of new customers over lockdown and increased support by people of local businesses.

R Stalker & Son was one of the area’s only shops to remain open when lockdown was first announced, and adjusted its business model to safely serve as many people as possible.

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This included introducing a free-delivery service for all orders, resulting in a spike in demand from the local community, including people who have been shielding.

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Ronnie Stalker, who runs the butcher shop in Dalry and has a second outlet in Beith, said: “This year we've seen a big increase in trade. We've had family members of customers as far away as London contacting us to make sure their family could get deliveries to ensure they were well fed during this crisis. The generosity and kind spirit of the nation really has come to light over the past year, and we’re proud to bring locally made, quality products to more people than ever.”

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The growing customer base has had a knock-on impact on Christmas orders, with the festive season set to be the butcher’s most successful yet as people support local businesses.