ICE cream maker Tom Davison is celebrating after winning an award in a nationwide competition.
Tom was awarded a gold medal for best in class for his vanilla ices at a competition run by the Ice Cream Alliance, the UK trade body for the ice cream industry.
Tom, whose Venetian Ices vans have become a familiar sight across Northumberland over the last 40 years, said: “Making ice cream is everything to me.
“You need real dedication to make ice cream. It is all I have ever wanted to do. To have my efforts recognised in this way is wonderful.”
He was also awarded a gold medal at the competition two years ago for his vanilla ice cream.
Unfortunately, a stroke last year meant he was unable to enter the contest, but now Tom is delighted to be back on winning form.
“I am over the moon,” he said. “My customers love my ice cream – some of them have been coming to me for nearly 40 years – and I am delighted that the judges obviously like it too.”
A holiday to Venice as a young boy was the start of Tom’s love of ice cream and a dream to one day run his own business.
At the age of 17, he set up Blyth-based Venetian Ices with just £200 in the bank, and now he has two mobile vans and a trailer.
Zelica Carr, chief executive officer of the Ice Cream Alliance, said: “Every year, Tom works harder than ever to perfect his entry, and once again he has shown his ice creams are exceptional.”