Heanor cafe Stella’s is our Cafe of the Year winner for 2014 after polling the most votes from readers.
The family-run cafe was voted number one after we asked readers to tell us which was their top cafe.
The High Street cafe is run by siblings Kim Clarence, 56, David Sheffield, 49, and Gail Sheffield, 54.
Proud manager Kim spoke of her joy this week, saying it was all down to the togetherness of the team.
She said: “We are such a tight-knit unit and we’re all so proud to win this award.
“To be honest myself, my sister, Gail, and brother, David, were all gobsmacked when we found out. I had just got back from holiday. It was a great welcome home present.”
“We’d like to say a huge thank you to all of our loyal customers who made the effort to vote for us.”
The cafe was bought by the trio’s parents Stella and Phillip Sheffield back in 1999, and together they ran the business.
Stella, who the cafe is named after, died five years later, and Phillip was joined by his three children to help with the day-to-day running.
The three siblings each took on tasks, including cash and carry trips and deliveries.
When Phillip died last year, Kim, David and Gail continued to run the cafe in honour of their mum and dad. They also employ two staff.
Kim said: “Mum and dad would have been very proud of winning the title. I’m so happy that we have managed to keep their dream going, and that people think we are doing a good job of it.”
Kim said the secret to their success was building up a network of regulars, keeping prices down and having a ‘secret weapon’ on the menu.
She said of ther ‘secret weapon’: “Our bestseller without any shadow of a doubt is the the breakfast. We offer three types of full English breakfast including the mini, the regular and the jumbo.
“We also allow customers to swap bits of food to make it their ideal meal. It goes down a storm with the customers.” The trio also wanted to say a special thank you to their small team of staff including Faye Western and Dawn Savage.
Kim said: “The girls are very popular with the customers and work extremely hard to help us – it’s always all hands on deck!”
The team were presented with a plaque for winning.