Northumberland-based pub group promotes food champion to tackle national chef shortage

Richard Moore with (from left) Ben Robinson, Dan Smith and Jack Taylor.Richard Moore with (from left) Ben Robinson, Dan Smith and Jack Taylor.
Richard Moore with (from left) Ben Robinson, Dan Smith and Jack Taylor.
Northumberland-based hospitality operator The Inn Collection Group is carving out a fresh way to counter a national shortage of chefs in the trade by growing talent from within.

The Alnwick-based pubco has appointed Richard Moore as group development chef following the culinary exponent’s promotion from his role as head chef at the operator’s £4.5million The Commissioners Quay Inn in Blyth.

Having worked in some of London’s leading hotel kitchens and headed up the brigade in Newcastle’s Theatre Royal for 11-years, Richard has set his sights on nurturing new and existing talent in kitchens across the group’s 10-strong and growing estate.

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He also plans to set up a chef’s training programme as the group continues its growth journey to more than double its portfolio by 2022.

Richard said: “It’s no secret that there is a chronic shortage of chefs nationally. Long working hours and often unrealistic expectations has seen a dip in young people moving into the hospitality sector.

“The future of the hospitality industry and businesses like The Inn Collection Group lies in the hands of young people coming through. If you have the right environment, training and atmosphere, then people will want to get into the hospitality sector and, more importantly, feel valued and want to stay.”

“Years ago young people, myself included, viewed going into a professional kitchen as a fantastic achievement.

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“We need to revitalise that spirit, to open young people’s eyes to the genuine opportunities available within the industry and to encourage them to see a career as a chef as one worthy of their time and energy.”

Richard is already in talks with Northumberland College in Ashington to set up a new chef training programme and introduce kitchen apprenticeships to the company.

The Inn Collection Group’s managing director Sean Donkin said: “We tend to find that local people care more and also understand what it is our customers want and need, whether that be general advice on the area or recommendations on where to go for a day out.

“Richard is the ideal person to ensure we can continue to find, train and retain local people within the business.”