Lancashire Pork Pie Appreciation Society

Appreciating the best best pork pies Lancashire has to offer

Next Meeting – Monday 4th September

The pies have now been ordered for the next meeting of the LPPAS will commence at 9:30PM on Monday 4th September at The Black Bull. This time the pies will be from West Lancashire with pies from St Helens & Poulton-le-Fylde. The last meeting was our best attended so far and Monday promises to be another excellent night for pie lovers.

Reviews – Mr C’s & Powell’s Pies

While our mission is to find and promote the best pork pies in Lancashire, there’s no point in turning down a good pie from elsewhere. Recently LPPAS have been privileged to sample pies from two outstanding bakers – Mr C’s of Fife and Powell’s of Whitchurch (Shropshire). The pies are different in style from our normal Lancashire pies, which is how it should be. So whilst we would always champion the Lancashire style, what did we make of these pies? In short, both Mr C’s and Powell’s make excellent pies and their enthusiasm and commitment to quality shines through. We’ll look at each in turn:

Mr C’s Pies

Mr C’s supply a wide range of high quality establishments and it was easy to see why. A wide range of pies were sampled: Pork, Pork & Chorizo, Pork & Black Pudding (Piggy Black), Venison, Chicken & Ham, Salmon & Smoked Seafood. As a general comment the quality of the ingredients was very clear. The jelly in particular was amongst the best we’ve tasted. The pastry was thicker than Lancashire style but expertly cooked and very tasty. The pork was Melton Mowbray style and perfectly seasoned. My preference is for plain pork pies but the pork and chorizo and chicken and ham provide good variety for those looking for a bit extra. The venison and smoked salmon & seafood were outstanding pies. The venison had a rich taste and flavour and met expectations. The salmon & smoked seafood exceeded expectations. It was hard to know what to expect from this pie, having never tasted anything like it, but it was a delightful blend of ingredients and of all the pies tasted must take the highest level of skill to balance ingredients to such an effect. Finally the personal favourite on the night was the piggy black pie. This is pork surrounded by black pudding and the overall effect was exquisite. Citizens of Bury, look away now, but the Scottish Black Pudding was as good as anything I’ve tasted and complemented the pork perfectly – a real treat.

Powell’s Pies

In contrast to Mr C’s, Powell Pies do just one thing, but they do it very well. They make pork pies to their traditional family recipe using the best locally sourced ingredients. Again their style is more Melton Mowbray than Lancashire, but nevertheless these are great pork pies. The pastry was again thicker than it would be in Lancs, but nevertheless managed to retain an excellent crispness. The pork had an excellent texture and perfect seasoning and finally the jelly was rich and peppery even if there was room for a little more. All in all excellent pies and it’s great to see local and family traditions upheld in this way.

More details:

Mr C’s Pies:

Powell’s Pies:

Pie Ratings – Howarth’s, Beech’s & Gigli’s

Monday 7th August saw two LPPAS records broken. With a total of 34 pies and 20 tasters this was the highest number of pies and the highest number of participants. Three good pies were served up all of which achieved LPPAS Recommended status. The winner on the night was Howarth’s of Urmston which just missed out by one mark on Highly Recommended status with an excellent overall score of 74 and moved into fourth place in the jelly category and ninth place overall.

While all the pies were judged positively there was a feeling that no one pie had a perfect balance of pastry, meat and jelly and that if the best of all three were to be combined a top rated pie could have been produced.

A full report will follow but for the moment the ratings for the three pies are shown below:



Pie Rating – Higginson’s (Grange)

Monday 3rd July proved to be the best night so far in terms of the quality of the two pies tasted. The second pie to be reviewed by the hungry LPPAS members were the pies from Higginson’s of Grange. Although now in Cumbria, Grange is very firmly in the County Palatine of Lancashire. Higginson’s had very kindly donated the pies to us as part of our money raising efforts for Macmillan Cancer Support. All were very appreciative of this gesture – more so when they realised the quality of the pies!


The standard dozen pies were provided for the LPPAS tasters. Despite this being the second pie of the night the hunger of the tasters remained undiminished.  The overall mark of 83% shows these are outstanding pies and puts them, at the time of writing, joint top of our very competitive leader board. In doing so they are comfortably awarded the much coveted ‘LPPAS Highly Recommended’ status.  Here are the scores of the tasters from the night.



Let’s look at the characteristics which make this our joint top rated pie. Firstly the overall quality with the excellent score of 83: Here there were a wide range of plaudits. ‘Wow!!’ perhaps summarises it best, with other comments being ‘spot on’, ‘excellent all round’ and ‘beautiful balance between pastry, pork and jelly’.  The marks for the pastry were a high 80 but slightly lower than the marks for overall quality and pork, Most appreciated the at the pastry was ‘crisp and tasty’ but the one small gripe from some was that it was thick in places. No doubt this is in part due to the substantial size and depth of the pie. The pork achieved the top mark of 83. – ‘Well what can I say!’ was one remark with another member saying that the meat had ‘a lovely texture, good colour and impressively smokey’. This time the jelly seemed to be to everyone’s liking. The size of the pie meant there was room for jelly but no scrimping on the meat. The two complemented each other perfectly. The ‘just slightly runny’ consistency of the jelly was well received and in conjuction with the jelly’s clarity and well seasoned flavour it proved a winning combination.

Overall, the Higginson’s Pie is, at the time of writing, joint top in our overall and pork pie rankings and second for both pastry and jelly.  So if you want to taste a top class pie  we strongly recommend you make the journey to sample them for yourselves.

Higginson’s Butchers
Keswick House
Main Street
Grange Over Sands
LA11 6AB

Or use our Pie Finder for directions!

Pie Rating – Wildblood’s (Norden)

Monday 3rd July proved to be the best night so far in terms of the quality of the two pies tasted. First to be reviews by the hungry LPPAS members were the pies from Wildblood’s of Norden. The pies had been baked specially for us on Monday morning (a day when Wildblood’s are normally closed) and once tasting began everyone was very grateful indeed.



As usual a dozen standard pies were provided for the hungry crowd and at the end of the tasting only Pepsi, the LPPAS dog, was disappointed as there was very little to spare.  The overall mark of 79% is testament to the quality of the pie, comfortably achieving the much coveted ‘LPPAS Highly Recommended’ status, and putting the pie joint 3rd on what is an increasingly tight pork pie leader board. Here are the scores of the tasters from the night.


Let’s look at the characteristics which make this such a highly rated pie. Firstly the overall quality with the excellent score of 79: Here there was general agreement that this was a ‘solid’ pie. ‘Sturdy’ and ‘packed full of meat’ were two of the terms used. The marks for the pastry and the pork were similar at 79 and 80. ‘Just up my street’ was a comment from one of the tasters on the pastry, while another remarked that the pastry was ‘crisp, thin & tasty with an excellent sheen. The pork too was much respected. Delicious and well-seasoned were two comments alongside the remark that he pork was ‘not too spicy’ and there was ‘lots of it!’ Finally the jelly, which once again illustrates how individual preferences can vary. The pie was so full of meat that in some pies there was little room for the jelly. Where there was jelly it was rated very highly with marks as high as 85 and 90%. It can hardly be a criticism that the pie was too full of meat but a little more room for jelly might have seen the pies score higher still amongst our jelly loving tasters.

Little room for jelly in this meat packed pie!


Overall, the Wildblood’s Pie is, at the time of writing, joint third in our overall pie rankings and in the top three for both pastry and pork.  If you haven’t already sample Wilblood’s pies, as a LPPAS Highly Recommended Pie, we strongly recommend you make the journey to sample them for yourselves.

Wildbloods of Norden
836 Edenfield Road
OL12 7SL

Or use our Pie Finder for directions!

Andy Neil Crowned Champion at The Great Lancashire Pork Pie Off.


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One of the more exotic pies, baked (allegedly) by Phil McDermott

A superb night was had by all at The Great Lancashire Pork Pie Off. Pies of all shapes and sizes, from across Lancashire, were devoured by a ravenous crowd. The pies were washed down with Black Edge Brewery’s excellent Pie PA made specially for the event. The Pie PA sold out, but the enjoyment continued with an excellent set from Andy Mudd. Well over £200 was raised for Macmillan Cancer Support putting us on track to meet our target of raising £500 for the year.

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Andy Neil’s Champion Pies

The pies were of a very high quality. Despite the quantity there was very little left at the end of the night. As the saying goes ‘It’s the taking part that counts’, but nevertheless there was a huge amount of local pride at stake and there was fierce interest in who would be crowned champion. The voting was close but, in the end, Andy Neil of Chapeltown was a worthy winner. Andy Kernick, who definitely would have won the prize for biggest pie was a close second, while third place went to Gordon Cain.

Andy Kernick from Turton with his pork pie
What a whopper!
Emma Pawluk of Macmillan with a sample of the pies.




Next LPPAS Meeting – Monday 3rd July

Following on from crowning the best home made pies in Lancashire in The Great Lancashire Bake Off we are back to our normal quest to find the best pork pies on sale in Lancashire and so the pies have now been selected for our next meeting  which will commence at 9:30PM on Monday 3rd July at The Black Bull. Walmesley’s have been on top for a long time now. Can we find a pie to replace them at the top?

As usual all are welcome.


On your marks, get set …..BAKE!

In one week’s time the winner of the inaugural Great Lancashire Pork Pie Bake Off will be crowned. If you fancy yourself as a Star Baker there’s still time to enter your showstopper, but the deadline is fast approaching. The full details of what should be a great evening are below:


To enter your pie either complete a simple entry form in The Black Bull, Edgworth or  just email with your name and contact details. There is a £5 entry fee, which is payable on the day. All proceeds will be going to Macmillan Cancer Support. Full details can be found here: Pie Off Rules

Don’t worry if you’re not a baker though. We will need as many tasters as possible on the day to help us crown Lancashire’s star pork pie baker.


To IMG_3897help wash the pies down we are proud to announce that Black Edge Brewery have made a special brew designed to complement the pies on offer. pIe PA is a pale, citrus, hoppy beer that is bound to go down a treat with the pie aficionados. Furthermore Black Edge have donated a barrel to support the event and so the more we drink on the night the more that will be raised for Macmillan Cancer Support!




As if beer and pies aren’t enough, once the champion has been crowned entertainment will be provided by vocal entertainer and comedian Andy Mudd. Andy will provide the perfect finish to what we hope will be a great evening raising money in support of Macmillan Cancer Support.

Pie Off Entry Details & Rules

The rules and entry details have been announced for the Great Lancashire Pork Pie Bake Off:

Rules and Entry Details

The event is open to all in Lancashire. The proceeds raised by the event will be given to MacMillan Cancer Support and so we encourage as many people as possible to enter. The rules are designed to reflect this.

Entry Fee
There is a £5 entry fee for all entrants. This is payable on the day.

While it will be possible to enter on the day, for planning purposes, it is strongly recommended that all competitors register their entry in advance. This can be done in person at The Black Bull or via Email at All that is required to register is name and contact details.

The Pies
In order to encourage as many entries as possible there are few strict rules that competitors must adhere to. For judging purposes entrants must supply a minimum of 4 individual pies or 1 large pie that is divisible into at least 4 portions.

 Submission on the Day
Judging will commence at 8pm. To facilitate this Pies must be brought to The Black Bull between 5:00 and 7:30 pm on the day. (Suggest pies are delivered/stored in the side room until 8:00?)

On receipt, pies will be  allocated their own individual ID. The judging will then be ‘blind’ such that judges will have no knowledge of the provenance of the pies Judging will commence at 8pm. Entrants can take no part in the judging process. The judging panel is currently being assembled from a combination of local pie experts and ‘celebrities’.

There main award will be given to the best home made pork pie in Lancashire. The winner will receive  a trophy and a prize donated by the brewery. Further awards  will be made for best pastry; best pork and best jelly.

Public Participation
Pies not consumed in the judging process will be made available for purchase on the night at a provisional fee of £2 per pie. Proceeds will go to Macmillan Cancer Support.

Download Pie Off Rules

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