A Slaithwaite businessman is proving himself to be a chip off the old block after launching a fish shop where his parents first fried up.
Everything is going swimmingly for Little Compo’s owner, Mathew Tate, who has at last found his ‘plaice’ after a few years as a self-confessed ‘bad lad’.
There is definitely no skating around now for the 34-year-old, who has been working all hours of the day to return the Britannia Road shop, once called Bridge Fisheries when owned by his parents, to its former glory.
He opened up shop in May after falling hook, line and sinker for the job, despite vowing to never to follow in his parents’ footsteps when he was younger.
Mathew, who used to peel spuds for his parents whilst he was a teenager, said: “I never wanted to work in a fish shop and even fell out with my dad over it because I had no interest.
“But I got back into it when I was 24 when I was out of work and my mum offered me a job in their new shop, Compo’s Cafe, in Holmfirth.
“After a while I decided it was time to do my own thing and saw the shop on the market and snapped it up.”
It has cast him into a very different role from his brief stint in the limelight in 2002 , when he appeared on ITV’s popular Bad Lads’ Army, a reality TV programme in which wayward volunteers underwent a four week 1950s military-style boot camp.
Mathew said: “I never got in trouble with the police but I was rebellious, just like some young lads can be.
“I saw it advertised and signed up and was accepted.
“But being on there with guys who had got prison sentences was a real eye opener and it changed how I looked at life.
“I realised that I didn’t want to be like that and gave working in a fish and chip shop another go.”
He and his team of four staff are now looking forward to a busy autumn following the planned opening of the village’s new Aldi store.
He said: “I’m going to be working seven days a week to start with, so I’ll definitely be keeping busy.”
And he even has dreams to expand and create his own mini fish and chip shop empire.
Mathew said: “I’d love to open up a second shop in the future around the area when we’ve been open a bit longer in Slaithwaite.”