A RYEDALE delicatessen has held a grand opening following a £750,000 refurbishment.

Thomas the Baker has refurbished its Helmsley deli to consolidate the two Thomas’ stores within the town. The deli now also incorporates the Thomas the Baker bakery, which was previously based across the Market Place.

The opening of saw well-known Yorkshire chef Stephanie Moon preparing a range of fresh food to inspire people to cook at home. Stephanie, who has worked in kitchens across the world, including The Dorchester, now regularly works with Thomas the Baker to help create recipes for both the deli and the firm’s 30 bake shops.

Helmsley’s record-breaking town crier David Hinde, also put in an appearance, to herald the reopening with a specially written cry, sharing some of the history of the shop, which dates back to the 1800s.

Simon Thomas said: “The opening event went really well, it was fantastic to see so much going on, and to feel the buzz in the store. Stephanie and the team did an amazing job, cooking up a storm right through the day, so people could try lots of different things. The new store not only looks completely different, but is now able to stock a much broader range."

Stephanie Moon added: “It was a fabulous day - the people of Helmsley took great interest in the food being produced and all seemed to really enjoy the samples we made. Helmsley is a true foodie town and the addition to the centre of the newly revamped bakery, deli and butchers has really been welcomed by all.”

The store will be running regular themed tasting events on weekends before Christmas, to introduce some of the new items available.

Thomas the Baker, is a family business employing three generations of the Thomas family. Established in 1981 with the opening of a Bakery in Malton, Helmsley followed a year later. The chain now stands at 30 shops across Yorkshire, along with a head office based in Helmsley. For more information about Thomas the Baker go to www.thomasthebaker.co.uk