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Comfort Friendly Inn has no room for chefs

01 January 2000
Comfort Friendly Inn has no room for chefs

TWO chefs have been made redundant from the hotel chain where they had worked for a combined total of 17 years after a switch to pre-prepared food meant their skills were no longer required.

Head chef Stan Rivers and sous chef Paulo Atalainha took redundancy from the Comfort Friendly Inn in Burnley, Lancashire.

Atalainha, who had been at the hotel for six years and now works at another hotel, near Burnley, said if he had stayed he would have been forced to accept a £3,500 pay cut.

"They said they were changing the food operation to frozen food and they didn't need our skills. We would have basically been boiling food and pushing a few buttons on a microwave but that is not skilled and it is not what we wanted to do," said Atalainha.

Rivers, a chef with the group for 11 years, has not found another job.

Regulars of the hotel have sent a 70-name protest petition to the Friendly Hotels group in London complaining about the treatment of "The Burnley Two."

Tony Potter, chief executive of Friendly, said: "We have introduced a new menu which we believe satisfies our customers and it is fresh food but it is not classical cuisine.

"The two chefs felt they didn't want to cook food which wasn't classical and they accepted redundancy. There is no hidden agenda and this is not the beginning of a whole prototype."

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