Celebrity Chef joins recruiters in highlighting chef shortage

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Celebrity chef Matt Tebbutt has joined with recruitment specialist TeamJobs to tempt more chefs to “booming” Bournemouth. Matt, the presenter of BBC TV’s Saturday Kitchen, opened his own restaurant, Schpoons & Forx at the Hilton Bournemouth in 2015. 

Bournemouth-based recruitment specialist TeamJobs places chefs at the Hilton Bournemouth and other blue chip companies including BHLive and AFC Bournemouth.

Matt said: “Bournemouth is booming and has seen huge growth in hospitality in recent years. However, there is a national shortage of chefs as TeamJobs can confirm.”

Matt entered the hospitality sector at 21 and went on to work for the renowned Michelin-starred chef, Marco Pierre White.

He ran his first restaurant, The Foxhunter in Nantyderry, Monmouthshire, for 13 years, before closing it to focus on his Hilton venture.

He continued: “A career as a chef requires long hours, hard work and real commitment, but it’s also highly rewarding and offers great opportunities, especially in a buzzing place like Bournemouth.

“A good chef can quickly make a name for his or herself and climb the ranks in a kitchen. They can also go on to use their skills to excel in other careers, such as management and consultancy.”

Recruitment specialist TeamJobs moved its hospitality, commercial, IT and executive divisions to central Bournemouth from its base in Poole in 2015, to better meet the demands of its clients.

Silva Bala from TeamJobs Hospitality, said: “Bournemouth’s hospitality scene is experiencing significant growth – in the last 12 months, 26 restaurants have opened in the town centre alone, with more scheduled to open over the summer and autumn.

“All these premises want chefs and as a result it is a candidates’ market.

“We could easily be placing 10 more chefs into great roles each week if we had the people, but it’s actually become a case of too few chefs spoiling the broth.”

Kevin Symes, 31, was recruited by TeamJobs for a chef position at the Hilton Bournemouth four weeks ago.

He said: “I am self taught and have worked my way up through kitchens including the Highcliff Marriott.

“Agency work through TeamJobs enables me to gain valuable experience and is taking me closer each day to my goal of becoming an Executive Chef.”

According to official figures, there are now more than 250,000 chefs in the UK, a 36 per cent rise since 2011.

But by 2022, the hospitality industry will need to recruit a further 11,000 chefs nationally to cope with demand.

Silva Bala continued: “We hope that by highlighting the current shortage, we can encourage more chefs into the area.

“We also want to target people who perhaps have the skills, but are not currently using them, to take advantage of these opportunities, and we are working with the local student hospitality scheme HALO, to encourage more young people to pursue a career in food.”

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