Despite the region currently being in the middle of a global pandemic, two business owners in the area have opened their doors to customers with enormous success.

Sarah Ford and Chris White decided to team up to open the Allendale Butchers and Farm Shop in the town centre last month after jumping at an opportunity they were given.

"I've known Chris for a long time," said Sarah.

"We've been customers for each other in the past and a few months ago we got talking about possibly opening something together when the chance of running this shop came up.

"He's got 30 years expereince of being a butcher in the local area and he's one of the best in the business in my opinion, so I'm sure I'm in safe hands with this business!

"We thought why don't we just go for it and open our own shop. Obviously Covid hasn't helped anyone, but we just thought there's no time like the present when it comes to business, so we've gone for it."

Despite only opening the doors to the new venture in early February, the duo have seen several positive reviews from local customers on social media, with a lot of compliments praising the quality of the products they sell.

"One of the biggest things we both wanted as part of this was to sell local produce," added Sarah.

"As much as possible, we try to sell locally sourced meat and vegetables. For example, a lot of what we buy comes from Hexham market and we use a pantry from elsewhere in Northumberland for the wildflower honey we have.

"English bacon is also a top seller here and I think not many butchers sell that, so I guess that's something we can offer that others can't."

Although as like businesses around the region have discovered, Covid has proven a tricky start to life for the new store, Sarah believes that they've coped really well with the current restrictions in force.

"I think so far we've done really well all things considered," she added.

"We have safety measures in place in the store itself, but we've also started a local delivery service which seems to be really popular too, so that seems a really good part of our business.

"As well as the produce itself, we want to get behind this idea of helping local people shop locally, especially right now.

"Hopefully when restrictions begin to ease we'll be able to welcome tourists from all over the country to our shop too, so I think we've got a busy year ahead of us."