New executive chef at Bovey Castle
James O'Connell is the new executive chef at Bovey Castle, Peter de Savary's luxury hotel and club in Dartmoor National Park, Devon. O'Connell moves from Damien Hirst's restaurant 11 The Quay in Ilfracombe. O'Connell has also worked at Cliveden, Berkshire, Longueville Manor in Jersey, and the Halkin in London. He replaces David Berry.
People 1st launches new website People 1st, the Sector Skills Council for the hospitality and leisure sector, has launched a new website, www.people1st.co.uk, for employers and employees. It provides advice, support and information, including industry research for bosses and a career path planner for staff.
Deadline for Knorr National Chef of the Year award There is still time to enter this year's Knorr National Chef of the Year award, organised by the Craft Guild of Chefs. Entrants must submit a menu for a three-course meal for four based on a non-soup, non-dairy vegetarian starter, a venison main course and a chocolate dessert. The winner will be selected from 40 semi-finalists in a cook-off at the Restaurant Show in London's Olympia on 20 September. The closing date is 28 April. To enter see www.unileverfoodsolutions.co.uk
27 authorities bid for supercasino licence Supercasino bids have been submitted by 27 local authorities in the race for the UK's only regional licence. They include favourite Blackpool as well as Leeds, Cardiff and the site of the Millennium Dome in Greenwich, London. Bids will be studied over the next six to eight weeks and then cut to a shortlist, which will be examined in detail over the summer. A final decision is expected by the end of the year. Bids will be evaluated on their regeneration potential. The winning casino will have a minimum floor space of 5,000sq m and be allowed up to 1,250 unlimited pay-out jackpot machines.