Sadie and Russell Hirst

Russell and Sadie Hirst -Multi Award Winning Artisan
Butcher and Baker

RJ Hirst High Class Family Butchers of Woodhall Spa are a multi award winning shop and producers. Husband and Wife team - Russell and Sadie Hirst are dedicated to the artisan ways of making delicious Lincolnshire food. They source the best ingredients and use time honoured methods and recipes to produce Lincolnshire Heritage Foods.

 Russell and I are proud and honoured to have won Select Lincolnshire Retailer of the Year 2017 - 2018, and for a fifth consecutive year Highly Commended Producer of the Year, putting us in the top three in the county once again. Congratulations to all the winners and finalists this year. The Awards ceremony that took place at Lincoln Minster School on 10/10/17 and was a spectacular evening and celebration of Lincolnshire Food and Drink Producers. Guests enjoyed a sumptuous dinner of fine local food. Thank you to Select Lincolnshire and Minster School for such wonderful hospitality, a truly memorable evening. Russell, the team and I are absolutely thrilled to have won Retailer of the Year and Highly Commended Producer of the Year. 

The "Village of the Year" competition has now started. Filming took place last year and Russell and I were delighted to be part of this exciting show, hosted by Penelope Keith. Being aired weekdays at 3 pm on Channel Four, four villages compete daily in their geographical zone. The winner each day goes through to a semi final, shown on a Saturday night at 8pm. They then go on to the grand final. Woodhall Spa will be shown on 2/2/18 at 3pm. Wish us luck! You follow on Twitter using #VillageoftheYear

On Monday 15/01/18 Russell and I were honoured to be invited to the Houses of Parliament by MP Victoria Atkins, along with other award winning food producers and celebrity chef Rachel Green to A Taste of Louth and Horncastle. This was a wonderful opportunity to showcase the fantastic food that is produced in Victorias Constituency. We had an amazing day and had the chance to meet Defra Minister George Eustice. The feedback from the event has been terrific and we have received lots of lovely comments about how much our produce was enjoyed. Thank you to Victoria for including us in this prestigious event.

Hello and thank you for the lovely feedback regarding my guest spot at the invitation of Amy Claridge for her Lincolnshire Kitchen Show on BBC Radio Lincolnshire. Amy was a wonderful host and it was great to share my cookery books and talk about "Off the Beeton Track" with her. Here is the link to listen again

Official launch of new talk "Much Ado About Food" at The Assembly Rooms Lincoln for prestigious gathering of Knights Tempar.

It was my tremendous honour back in July to launch my new talk for a meeting of Knights Templar, following their attendance at The Chapter House in Lincoln Cathedral. We took a culinary whirl through the ages, exploring our food history through books, kitchenalia, herbs and spices. It seemed appropriate when so many spices were brought back to England from the 11th and 12th century crusades.  

Earlier in the year I was thrilled to be involved in the first ever Emerge Festival in Horncastle, this was organised by the talented young people of Horncastle Red Lion Theatre and Banovallum School and celebrated the life and work of Shakespeare. I put together a display of Elizabethan and Early Stuart Food, Kitchenalia and Recipes.  I'm looking forward to working with them again for Emerge 2018! Save the date 21/04/18 in Horncastle.

A natural progression from my talk "Off the Beeton Track" is my new talk, looking back at food history from the medieval period to the Victorian era. It is called "Much Ado About Food" and is a culinary whirl through history, exploring our food past through material culture, recipes, books, herbs and spices. For bookings and enquiries, please email me at I am now getting booked in to 2019, so it is advisable to contact me with your dates as early as possible please.

New for 2018 Food History and Historic cookery workshops  –  Following on from the success of the workshops I offered with Heritage Lincolnshire in 2017 on Medieval Food and WW1 and 2 Era food, I am pleased to be offering the chance for you to book your own food history workshop. I cover all eras from the medieval period to WW2.

Russell and I are delighted to announce that The Countryside Alliance have awarded our shop in the 2016 "Rural Oscars" the accolade of Highly Commended East of England Butchers. A huge thank you to everyone who voted for us, we really do appreciate your support. We are over the moon to be finalists again, the first time being in 2014. We are the only butchers in Lincolnshire to be awarded this prestigious title and only one of three businesses in the county across all categories, the other two being Doddington Hall Farm Shop and Leadenham Tearooms and Post Office. If you would like more information see

 At the most recent Lincolnshire Poacher County Food Awards 2016 - 2018 we were thrilled to come away with 12 accolades. Winning Gold for our Hand Cured Bacon and Pork and Apple Burgers. Silver for our Lincolnshire, Pork and |Leek, Pork and Stilton, Beef, Pork and Tomato Sausages, Lamb and Mint and Steak Burgers, Haslet and Steak Pie, Bronze for our Sausage Rolls and Gluten Free Lincolnshire Sausage. This is wonderful recognition for our dedication to making the best traditional Lincolnshire dishes for you to enjoy. All of our prize winning products are available for you to enjoy in the shop.

Back in 2015 at the start of the General Election campaign, we welcomed our Councillor Craig Leyland, MP Victoria Atkins and the then Home Secretary Theresa May to our shop. The now Prime Minister enjoyed some of our award winning Lincolnshire Sausages. For the full story see Sausage Fans website  and The Horncastle News

September 2015, MP Victoria Atkins very kindly invited Russell and I to the Houses of Parliament to take a hamper of our Lincolnshire Produce. This was a once in a lifetime day for us and we cannot thank her enough. We were treated to a tour of both the House of Commons and the House of Lords, followed by watching the Speakers Procession and tickets to Theresa Mays second Prime Ministers Question Time. This was an extraordinary insight and wonderful glimpse into the heart of our democracy. A highlight of the day was Victoria presenting us on the steps of Westminster Hall with a framed photo of the Prime Minister and her visit to our shop last year. This was an amazing experience and we were honoured to have the opportunity to showcase Select Lincolnshire and our hand made award winning produce. We were honoured to recieve a letter from the Prime Minister thanking us for our hamper of produce and how much she enjoyed visiting Woodhall Spa and of course our Lincolnshire Sausages! What a wonderful experience to have had and thank you again to Victoria and everyone who made this trip to Westminster so special.

We now have a feedback facility on our website, see the tab above. Thank you for the lovely comments we have received from those of you who have used this facility already, we really appreciate you taking the time to do so. Winning awards is lovely, but it is making food for you to enjoy that is our driving force and motivation.

We feel that being such a small team - Sharon, Simon, Russell and myself, is really the key to our success. When you come into our shop you can be assured that Russell has made and prepared your meat and I have made and baked your pies and pastries.We believe that gives us power to control the quality of what we produce and keep it consistently extremely high. Russell is the Butcher and me (Sadie)  the baker. Sharon and Simon are dedicated to offering you the best customer service. We work very hard to make traditional Lincolnshire dishes, preserving old artisan methods and recipes. Our aim is simply to make food for you that you love to eat and for you to be confident in what you have bought.

Woodhall Spa is a beautiful village in mid Lincolnshire and has become more and more popular as an inland holiday resort. There is much to enjoy with a rich aviation history, Lincoln, the coast and the wolds within easy reach and the village itself has much to offer. There are an abundance of places to stay,  fantastic camping and caravanning parks, self catering cottages and  hotels. The village is home to the headquarters of the English Golf Union with a world class golf course. There's interesting independent shops for you to enjoy, a great choice of cafes, pubs and restaurants.  The Cottage Museum, The Kinema in theWoods and Jubilee Park are well worth a visit.

For one weekend in July, Woodhall Spa turns the clock back to all things 40's for the 1940's Festival. It is already one of the most popular events of its kind in the country, with thousands of people flocking into the area. It has an amazing atmosphere, with people dressing up, the local businesses turning the clock back, vintage stalls, re-enactors, it really isn't to be missed if you love all things vintage. For more information see

I'm so lucky that my work as a baker and owner of a food shop is and extension of my hoppy and passion for preserving our culinary heritage and collecting old recipes and cookery books. For over four years I have been able to share my collection and interest with a monthly food column in The Target series of Newspapers Lincolnshire Echo and Retford Times.

I am also a regular recipe contributor to Select Lincolnshires Good Taste Magazine, , Lincs Scene, Wolds Scene and the Select Lincolnshire website.

If you are involved with a communiy group, school, WI or history society, I offer my talk called "Off the Beeton Track". I bring along some of my collection of antiquarian cook books, vintage cookbooks and kitchenalia.  We explore cook books as a unique genre of literature and authors from medieval times up to the present day. If you would like to discuss booking me for your group, please just ring the shop on 01526 352321 or send me an email  2018 and in to 2019 is filling up fast, so it is advisable to contact me as far ahead of your dates as possible please.

Thank you for taking the time to visit our website and Russell, Sharon, Simon and myself look forward to welcoming you to our shop soon. Best wishes and Good Eating, Sadie



Click here to enlarge the diary