Michelin-starred chef Giorgio Locatelli (left) and catering consultant Vic Laws (below left) have been appointed ambassadors of the Clink, the commercial restaurant at Her Majesty's Prison High Down in Sutton, Surrey.
The pair, who have both lent their support to the 85-seat venue since its inception in 2009, are the first industry figures to take on the official roles at the restaurant, which is run by inmates.
Vic Laws, the Clink's new restaurant ambassador, will train prisoners in front-of-house service twice a month, while Locatelli, its chef ambassador, will continue his involvement with the kitchen staff. He has previously hosted training sessions for prisoners at the Clink and has cooked alongside them at three of its special events.
Locatelli said becoming chef ambassador was a "huge honour" for him. "I wholeheartedly believe in the objectives of The Clink and I am exceedingly pleased to be a part of it," he said.
Laws, who has more than 50 years experience working in the industry, added: "Working so closely with the Clink has been a fantastic opportunity to help make a difference and support the rehabilitation of the prisoners. This is extremely important to me and I will continue to support and encourage the incredible work that the Clink carries out."
The Clink recently appointed Chris Moore as chief executive while the day-to-day running of the restaurant is overseen by Alberto Crisci, catering manager at High Down Prison.
By Kerstin Kühn
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