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Head Chef looks back on 20 years with Shropshire hotel
10th January 2014
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As a teenage kitchen porter at one of Shropshire’s top hotels, Barry Workman never thought he would one day be celebrating 20 years as its head chef.  

And he never imagined that the nephew who joined him on work experience at age 15 would go on to work for Gordon Ramsey and Marcus Wareing.  

But his 20th anniversary at The Best Western Valley Hotel in Ironbridge is fast approaching and, after becoming a director of the family-run business several years ago, the 52-year-old will not be going anywhere.  

“I first worked here when I was at school as a kitchen porter, then went on to be an apprentice and attended Radbrook College and now, almost 40 years later, to celebrate 20 years as head chef is just fantastic,” said Mr Workman.  

“We were talking during a meeting the other week and realised that between the five managers, we have clocked up more than 100 years between us at The Valley Hotel.  

“It has always been and remains a family run business and I think that is the secret to our success.”  

During his time in the kitchens at The Best Western Valley Hotel, Mr Workman has trained dozens of new staff, including his own son Adam - who at 23 is now the hotel’s pastry chef.  

Mr Workman said that helping budding young chefs and training them up was one of the most rewarding aspects of his job.  

After his early years at the Valley Hotel , Mr Workman began his chef career at Telford Golf and Country Club in the 1980s where he was head Chef, before moving to work in Leicester for several years. 

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Mark Luckman

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I champion the best businesses in Telford and Wrekin, businesses recommended by you. If you run a local business or know a really great local business that you think deserves to be known by more local...

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