A LONG-ESTABLISHED Indian restaurant has received the perfect birthday present by being invited to participate in a prestigious national competition.

To coincide with its 30th anniversary, Corbridge Tandoori will be represented in the Tiffin Cup, a competition to find the best South Asian restaurant in the country.

Terms of the competition mean MPs across the country nominate a restaurant in their constituency, with Hexham’s representative Guy Opperman choosing the Corbridge business to go forward to the grand final at the House of Commons in July.

Jewel Ahmed, the owner of the tandoori, said: “I am so pleased that Guy Opperman has nominated me for the Tiffin Cup as it’s such a big competition.

“Guy comes in here regularly and it is nice that he thought about putting our business forward.”

The nomination comes as the business celebrates three decades in the village.

Jewel’s family took over the restaurant 15 years ago after the Jahan family had established the business in the late 1980s. The Ahmeds have loved being in the centre of the village and would love to be here for the next 30 years.

Jewel said: “It’s thanks to all the great customers that we have been able to last so long, and I’m very grateful to them. The restaurant is like the centre for a lot of people, and customers come in and always see somebody they know and get talking to them.

“The people of Corbridge have been so good to us and I want my son Sulayman to take over when I retire.”

Guy Opperman was confident Corbridge Tandoori would perform well in the competition, with previous nominations from the Hexham constituency gaining top five finishes.

He said: “I am delighted that my nomination for Corbridge Tandoori has been accepted – this is a great competition celebrating fantastic food, and all for a good cause. I am sure people in Corbridge will be wishing this local restaurant every success.”