A family-run Midhurst pie business – which supplies shops in Fernhurst and Milford – has triumphed at the prestigious British Pie Awards.

Mud Foods won class champion for its game pie and class champion for its gluten-free chicken, ham and leek pie.

Mud was highly commended for its wild venison in red wine gravy pie and for its gluten-free steak and kidney pie, as well as winning gold, silver and bronze medals for its other pies.

The British Pie Awards – which has been going for 14 years – is judged in Melton Mowbray and attracts pie producers large and small from across the land. This year more than 900 pies were entered into 23 classes – sweet and savoury.

There were some surprise entries too, with everything from fusion pies – such as balti and vindaloo – to kebab pies.

However, traditional meat-based pies dominated the top four classes.

A team of 140 judges was required to decide the winners of this year’s awards.

The British Pie Awards success comes hot on the heels of Christian Barrington, chief pie maker and founder at Mud Foods, appearing on the Channel 4 series Aldi’s Next Big Thing last year.

Christian won Mud Foods a supermarket contract with Aldi on the series for its champion-winning chip shop chicken curry pie.

Christian said: “This is a very special year for us – it feels like quite a momentous occasion.

“It’s a hat-trick for our game pie, as it’s the third time it’s been crowned a champion-winning pie. And it’s also the first time being crowned champion with one of our recently-launched gluten-free range.

“I’m very proud and thankful to my fantastic team of pie-oneers, who work tirelessly to keep our standards at the highest level.”

Mud sources its ingredients from local producers and makes its pastry with butter, not margarine.

Christian started the business in 2009 – selling pies and square quiches at local farmers’ markets – and built up a devoted fan base through word of mouth and recommendation.

Mud Foods soon branched out into retail shops, farm shops, pubs and restaurants. In the past three years its online pie shop has taken off and Mud now sells pies nationwide.

Anyone who would like more information about Mud Foods, or wants to order one of its pies, should visit its website at www.mudfoods.com for further details.