One of Leeds’s best chefs has left his job to open up a flagship restaurant and work alongside hard-to-employ youngsters.
Richard Walton-Allen was executive chef at Harvey Nichols for more than 12 years.
The award-winning chef is now national executive chef at Create and will focus on the new restaurant on Kings Street in Leeds city centre.
The Create Foundation offers training and jobs within its food business to local homeless, marginalised or vulnerable people.
Richard, 42, said: “I left Harvey Nichols in April after being there for 12 years.
“I had a great time with a great team and had lots of excellent opportunities.
“It was fantastic but this came along and it’s something very worthwhile and I feel I can make a difference.
“The aim is to get people back into employment.”
He added: “I’m helping with everything from the design of the restaurant to employing the staff and choosing the cutlery.
“Once it’s up and running I’ll be working with the team to bring great food to the people of Leeds.
“The high-quality British food will be delivered in a fresh environment and comes with a fantastic feel-good message.
“Every penny goes back into helping people to get into employment.
“It’s another dimension to the restaurant that not many places can offer.”
The aim of the Create Foundation is to train up to 200 trainees every year through the Create Employment Academy.
Currently there are four Create venues with varying services, in Leeds, Doncaster, Liverpool and Sunderland.
The Leeds restaurant is the first of its kind and will be open to the public on Friday, August 5.
For more information about the restaurant opening, visit Richard’s blog at: www.foodbycreate.co.uk/richards-blog