As Carlisle goes crazy for KFC, another city takeaway has quietly closed.

For decades Pieri’s fish and chip shop has served customers in Denton Holme and far beyond.

Brothers Ronnie and Freddie Pieri sold the business to present owner David Wilson in 1985.

Pieri’s is renowned for the quality of its patties - a dish blending potato with ingredients including meat and cheese. Customers travelled from across the north to enjoy them.

Last summer David fell from a ladder while painting at home and injured his right shoulder.

He planned to reopen the shop but has now decided to close permanently.

“I had an operation on my shoulder,” he says. “I’d snapped the tendons. I haven’t got the use of it back that they thought I would.

“I can’t lift. I can’t turn. I can’t even go to bed - I’ve been sleeping in a chair since it happened.

“I was doing physio. I don’t think I’m going to get the amount of movement back that I need. There’s a lot of heavy work in the shop. You don’t realise how much you use your shoulder to pick something up.”

David, 68, ran the Northumberland Street shop with his wife Pauline. They live next door and will apply for planning permission to turn the shop into a residential property, as an extension to their home.

“It’s the end of an era,” says David. “I might be the longest-serving fish and chip shop owner in Carlisle.

“The age I was, I never thought I would miss being in the shop. But even with daft crack, you were getting conversation.

“People popped in for a crack even if they didn’t buy anything.”

David says his customers have been disappointed to hear that Pieri’s will not reopen. The thought of no more patties has been particularly upsetting.

He acquired the recipe from Ronnie and Freddie Pieri, and says they got it from a chef at the County Hotel on Botchergate many years ago.

David’s varieties were cheese, curry, curry and cheese, and meat with potato and tomato.

“People say ‘Where am I going to get my patties?’ I say ‘You’ll have to buy the recipe!’ I’m open to reasonable offers...”

Can David give us a clue about what makes them so special?

“No!” he says with a smile. “The secret of the patties has gone forever.”

Their fans include a former Carlisle resident who travelled from Newcastle twice a year for them, buying two dozen to freeze.

Three times a year a group of bikers from Hull would stop at Pieri’s en route to the Lake District.

Regular customers travelled from Haltwhistle, Workington, Wigton and Annan.

The husband of one of David’s nurses at the Cumberland Infirmary was his first customer every Saturday. The nurse told David that she missed her curried pattie.

Their fame travelled around the world when an Australian radio station rang David to talk about traditional foods, prompted by a Carlisle ex-pat who lived there.

“This Australian bloke said ‘I believe you do something called patties?’ I thought ‘This is some wind-up, this.’”

David once supplied several dozen patties to a customer who took them to his son in Australia.

“He said ‘That’s all he misses: your patties and Tetley’s tea.’”

Having so much free time feels strange to David and Pauline, although their four grandchildren will occupy much of it.

As for the job he is leaving behind after 34 years, David added: “I’d like to thank all the staff I’ve had over the years and all the customers. I hope they can find something as tasty elsewhere.”