A force to be reckoned with in gastronomic circles

Mark Bocking, new head chef at the Lindisfarne Inn, Beal.
Mark Bocking, new head chef at the Lindisfarne Inn, Beal.

He’s served in both Gulf wars, cooked for Royalty and the Prime Minister and served up high-end banquets to more than 300 guests.

Now talented Mark Bocking has joined The Lindisfarne Inn at Beal as their new head chef.

It was in the fiery heat of a desert kitchen that Royal Air Force veteran Mark began his kitchen career.

He joined the RAF as a chef and has served in jungle field kitchens in Belize, and fed more than 3,000 personnel at a time in Mount Pleasant, an RAF station in the Falkland Islands, where the corridors from one end of the camp to another were more than a mile long.

Former Prime Minister John Major dined on Mark’s food at Chequers, while Princess Anne was the guest of honour at an RAF banquet where Mark was part of a right-royal kitchen brigade.

Closer to home, Mark is widely regarded on the local food scene. He spent seven years as head chef at The Dunstanburgh Castle Hotel in Embleton and three years as sous chef at the acclaimed Treehouse Restaurant in Alnwick. Now, he is looking forward to making the kitchen at the Lindisfarne Inn his own and adding his flair to the food offer there.

Mark said: “It is an exciting new chapter for me and a completely different challenge to what I have done before. I’m looking forward to putting my own stamp on the menu here – dishes with a bit of a twist like a chicken pannacotta – my version of chicken and sweetcorn soup. I love the fact the inn uses a lot of seafood – I’ll certainly be keeping that on the menu, but adding in my own touches.”

The new menu is available at www.lindisfarneinn.co.uk
To celebrate Mark’s appointment, a Gazette reader will win a three-course meal for up to four people at The Lindisfarne Inn. To be in with a chance of winning, buy a copy of this week’s Gazette and turn to Page 55.