Day in the Life: The Bay Fish & Chips owner, Calum Richardson, tells us about his day in the Stonehaven chippy

The owner of this award-winning fish and chip shop has a surprisingly healthy lifestyle

Published 23rd Sep 2021
Updated 8 th Aug 2023


I get up to let the dogs out. We’ve got two labradoodles called Smudgy and Mallow.


I spend around in hour in my home gym. I started getting into fitness in early 2018, mostly for personal mental health reasons, but I’ve found it’s really helped from a business perspective as well, so much so that I ended up offering access to personal training as a benefit for staff.


Time for breakfast. If I’ve got a full day of work ahead of me, it's usually porridge with lots of fruit. Other days I might have avocado on sourdough toast, or fruit and yogurt.


I take the dogs out for another walk before leaving for work.


The manager and I arrive before everyone else to ensure all the prep is done and the shop is clean and ready to go. I used to be in the navy, and I still firmly believe that a clean ship is a happy ship! I’ve been running The Bay for 15 years and have got many elements of prep down to a fine art. The fish comes pre portioned daily from Cooper’s Seafood, for example, although we do cut some into smaller portions for those who want that. Our potatoes also come pre chipped. We do this to help keep food waste to an absolute minimum. We prepare our other fresh daily items including mushy peas, tartar sauce, coleslaw, onions for onion rings, slice all the lemons and prepare our chickpea fritters.

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We’re open from now until 8pm at the moment, and seeing the positive impact it has had on the team’s work life balance is making me think I’ll never go back to a 10pm closing. The majority of the service is taken up by fulfilling the pre orders our amazing customers make, though we do still get a lot of walk ups to the service window. For breaks and meals, I tend to batch cook things like lasagna at home, which I offer to the team as well if they wish. More recently we’ve been ordering in home cooked meals from our amazing butcher John Davidson’s which have gone down with the staff.


The team cleans everything down and splits up the waste to be recycled or composted depending on what is required. While this is happening I do an hour or so of emails before we put the shutters down for the evening.


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I arrive home and let the dogs out again. In years gone by I might have sat at the laptop when I got home till one or two in the morning, but these days I’m much better at switching off. I do glance at emails and respond to anything urgent, but as a rule when I get in I like to put my feet up. If I’m working from home, I’ll stop at 5pm.


Time for bed before everything starts again tomorrow.

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Gaby Soutar is a lifestyle editor at The Scotsman. She has been reviewing restaurants for The Scotsman Magazine since 2007 and edits the weekly food pages.
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