After the shop was gutted by fire in July, our Ruthin reopens on Thursday (Dec 11) after a £100,000 scheme to bring the Grade II listed building back to its former glory after a freak blaze in the summer.

On Saturday Ruthin residents can enjoy free mince pies as a thank-you from owner Edward Chatwin for standing by the business during its long spell under restoration.

A grocery shop has stood on the site for decades and Mr Chatwin has given the premises a new look with green and black signage as part of an on-going rebrand of the company which also includes shops in Chester and Holywell.

He said: “Offering free mince pies on Saturday is just a small way of saying thank-you to the lovely people of Ruthin who have been a tower of support throughout these long months of building work.

“There has been some disruption with builders and vans coming and going but local people have been great, often popping in just to say they were looking forward to seeing the shop open again.

“Instead of just restoring what was there we have gone a step further with a complete redesign.This is only the second shop in the Chatwins chain to carry the branding which was previously blue and white.

“We pledged to be back in business by Christmas and after working flat out we are thrilled to be up and running again.”

The business was bought by Chatwins, a firm of family bakers from Cheshire, in November 2013. It was doing a roaring trade until an electrical fault in one of the refrigerated counters sparked a blaze which gutted the building last July.

Mr Chatwin, a father-of-three, added: “True to Welsh tradition, Ruthin people gave us a wonderful welcome and it was terribly upsetting to see the business go up in smoke so soon after opening.

“Now that’s all in the past and we are looking forward to a bright New Year and great future in Ruthin.”

Eight people work at the shop which sells sandwiches, cakes, pasties and hot roasts.

Also included in the new design is a bright and airy café area seating 20.

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