Chef Warrick Dodds has left Langho's one-Michelin-starred Northcote Manor.
Speaking exclusively to Caterer, the 27-year-old former Acorn winner, who has worked at the Lancashire hotel for the past seven-and-a-half years, confirmed that he had left his job last week. "I just felt that it was time to move on and make my own way," he said.
Dodds is to become head chef at the restaurant at Stanley House hotel in Mellor, near Blackburn - a new hotel being built by Lee Hand Leisure, the holding company for the Walker family, which owns premiership football club Blackburn Rovers.
Keith Holden, general manager for Stanley House, confirmed Dodds's appointment and added he was "absolutely delighted" that the chef was joining the hotel's team.
The converted 17th-century farmhouse, which is scheduled to open in September, will have 12 bedrooms and an 80-cover fine-dining restaurant.
Northcote Manor's co-proprietor and executive chef Nigel Haworth said: "Warrick has to progress his career as he sees fit. He has been absolutely brilliant and worked really hard for me here and I wish him luck."
He added that Dodds's departure was amicable. "I'm looking on it in a positive way. Warrick needed a change and his going has opened up the door for other members of the team at Northcote."
Northcote Manor's sous chef, Matt Harris, 29, has been appointed head chef. Lisa Allen, 23, moves up to a sous chef position.
Source: Caterer & Hotelkeeper magazine, 10 June 2004