Stockbridge butcher creates Barkes Banger

Butcher Vic May presents Duncan with his Barkes sausage
Butcher Vic May presents Duncan with his Barkes sausage

Observer columnist and broadcaster Duncan Barkes now has a sausage named in his honour, thanks to a local butcher.

The Barkes Banger has gone on sale at May’s of Stockbridge, just south of Chichester, and is the brainchild of proprietor and master butcher Vic May.

A jumbo size, the sausage is made with best-quality pork, herbs and a hint of chilli. It is made onsite and is now on sale at the Stockbridge Road outlet.

Vic May said: “I wanted to create something that was exactly like Duncan – a little controversial, a bit spicy and, at times, a handful.

“As a regular reader of his column and listener to his various radio shows, it is clear that he is a man who likes his food, so a quality banger is just right for him.

“Duncan is a local voice who is prepared to stand up for what he believes in and is not frightened to ruffle a few feathers. He is also a supporter of local businesses so I wanted to do something to acknowledge this.”

Duncan Barkes said: “I am chuffed to bits to have a sausage named after me and I love what Vic has created and his thinking behind it.

“We are blessed with many great independent shops in our area, and despite the onslaught of supermarkets and convenience stores, you cannot beat a small business which is an expert in their field. We should all do our bit to support them.

“I spent an afternoon with Vic making the bangers and they are genuinely handcrafted. They are a hearty meal and also just right for a barbecue.”

Vic, 67, has worked in the meat trade for more than 55 years and opened his first butchers shop at the age of 20. Locally he started at Parsonage Farm, Barnham, in 1985 where he was in situ until 1999. In 2000 he ran his own catering business and in 2009 became butchery manager at the Cowdray Farm Shop in Midhurst.

Following a stint at the The Hungry Guest in Petworth as meat manager, he opened May’s of Stockbridge in 2012.

The shop has around 200 customers a week and is fast becoming a destination for shoppers who want good-quality local lamb and pork, as well as beef and game.

Duncan Barkes has been writing his Observer column for more than six years. Based in Chichester, he can be heard on Angel Radio 101.1 FM and on DAB digital radio, every Saturday at 6pm playing music from the crooners and light jazz.

He also works on LBC radio in London and regularly appears on Sky News discussing the next day’s newspapers.