Stone-baked pizza trailer proves a hit after pitching up at Sunderland gym car park

A trailer serving up stone-baked pizzas has proved a lockdown hit after setting up a pitch at a Sunderland gym car park.

Saturday, 21st November 2020, 7:00 am

Fitness 2000 gym in Roker Avenue has had to close its doors in line with the national second lockdown, however, its car park has been put to good use by a father and son pizza business.

Truly Madly Pizza is the brainchild of Jed Wade and son Sam, from Roker, who started selling stone-baked pizzas from a converted trailer – complete with its own wood-fired oven – five years ago.

Usually they would have had a busy year spinning pizzas at weddings and festivals, but like all involved in the wedding and events sector their usual sources of trade couldn't happen due to the pandemic.

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Jed Wade with his son Sam with a Pizza they have just cooked. Picture by FRANK REID
Jed Wade with his son Sam with a Pizza they have just cooked. Picture by FRANK REID

After speaking to city businessman Les Ojugbana, who owns Fitness 2000, they’ve started doing pop-up weekends in the large car park area.

Their first weekend, last weekend, proved a hit and the pair sold 190 pizzas over three evenings. Each pizza is freshly made by hand, starting from £5 for a classic margherita to £6 for a veggie and £8.50 for a meat feast.

Jed said: “This was going to be a busy year this year but over the summer five weddings had to be cancelled, as well as 12 festivals which we were due to be at. So we’ve had to come up with ways to do things differently. We sell DIY pizza boxes for people to make pizzas at home and they’ve been really popular, they’re a great thing to do with the kids in lockdown.

"I only live down the road from the gym so I asked Les about the possibility of using the car park and he agreed. Yes, there’s a lot of take aways and pizza shops round here, but no one is doing them in a wood-fired oven. We had a great response in the first weekend and great feedback so if it continues like that we’ll look to keep doing it once the lockdown ends.”

The Truly Madly Pizza trailer is at the Fitness 2000 car park on weekends

The Truly Madly Pizza trailer is at Fitness 2000 car park in Roker on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 5pm to 8pm.

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Firing up the wood-fired oven
Jed prepping a pizza
Making a chicken garlic kiev pizza
The finished product