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Sarah Heward, owner of The Real Food Café at Tyndrum, is the woman who made a million from fish and chips – and her achievement has been celebrated at the inaugural Amazing Women Awards in London.
The Amazing Women Awards, dubbed #50over50, were launched by Woman & Home Magazine to recognise and celebrate the achievements of amazing women over 50 across 10 categories.
Sarah was one of five women who made it to the final in the Don’t Tell Me I Can’t category, helping her to stake her claim as one of the 50over50.
It was her success, particularly in the face of adversity, in turning a derelict Little Chef into an award-winning fish and chip shop with a turnover in excess of £1 million that made her stand out from the crowd when it came to judging.
Since she bought the café in 2005, she has overcome a number of obstacles including malicious and targeted vandalism, embezzlement and near bankruptcy as well as devastating personal losses to create the hugely successful business it is today.
She told Woman & Home Magazine: ‘My vision was to create a café or roadside diner that was the exact antithesis of everything that Little Chef had offered. In other words, I wanted to serve good quality, homemade or locally sourced food in a friendly and warm environment.
‘There were many obstacles – I underestimated seasonality and was underfunded, and of course the personal trauma. But I got through by having faith in myself, the right people around me and seeking help. It feels great to have such a popular café.’
Sarah travelled from the café in Tyndrum to the awards ceremony which was held at Claridge’s Ballroom in Mayfair, London, on October 17.
She and the other nominees were met by Radio 2 DJ Jo Whiley in a celebration of older women battling stereotypes and for their achievements beyond the age of 50.