Butcher Vic Gibson and his colleague Eddie Fuhrmann have picked up several awards for their sausages.

The 58-year-old, who owns Vic Gibson Butchers Ltd, Lower Addiscombe Road, picked up four gold awards at the national sausage and burger competition at the national food and meat exhibition in Telford.

Vic became a butcher after leaving school at 16 and has never looked back. His shop serves 12 varieties of bangers including the hot jalapeno, tomato and basil, his award-winning pork and leek and Vic's personal favourite the traditional pork fine cut. All 12 varieties will be on sale during national sausage week which started on Monday.

Despite the hard graft Vic works on average 12 hours a day the married dad-of-two says the best part of his trade is his regular customers.

He says: "You never sit down. But I get one day off a week.

"The best part is meeting and talking to people. We have a lot of regular customers some of them I've been serving since I started running the place 16 years ago."

Most of what Vic knows about his trade he has picked up over the years, but he has also taken some courses at Smithfields College.

Vic, who lives in Caterham, says he has seen people's eating habits change in the last 30 years, as more and more customers go for convenience foods.

"It's not the same at it was 20 or 30 years ago. People don't have time now. Everybody's too busy. People are more interested in convenience. So we sell a lot of sausages, burgers, that kind of thing, things that people can just stick under the grill."

Vic adds: "I do think it's a shame. I think it's important for a family to be able to sit down together for a proper roast dinner. But it's the lifestyle, people are working all the time."

Eddie Fuhrmann, 38, from Waddon, is the butcher's sausage maker. The dad-of-two explains he has tried his hand at a number of new mixtures whenever he has time.

He says: "I tried out a breakfast sausage with mushrooms and baked beans. That worked quite well.

"But we get very busy. We sell about 800lbs in weight of sausages every week so it's just a matter of getting the time really."