Leading hospitality names such as Gary Jones and Alistair Birt were among those recognised at a glittering ceremony for the esteemed Craft Guild of Chefs Awards 2022, which also saw some of Cumbria’s talented chefs handed an award.

Held on June 9 at Magazine London, the black-tie event marked a return to its original format after a two-year break due to Covid.

Ambleside’s Dan McGeorge, head chef at Rothay Manor was presented with the Restaurant Chef Award, while Sedbergh’s Nina Matsunaga, chef patron of the Black Bull was presented with the Pub Restaurant Chef Award.

The shortlisted finalists in the Pub Restaurant category alongside Nina were Simon Harris, The Embankment, Bedford (Peach Pubs) and Nick Hemming, The Heron Inn, Malpas.

Nina Matsunaga said: ‘’Winning was totally unexpected but I’m really over the moon. To be honest it hasn’t fully sunk in. James and I were on the train home very early on Friday morning, so we could get back in time for service. I guess once I’ve had a bit of time off the full enormity of what’s been achieved will hit me, but I couldn’t have done it without the full support of the entire team at the Bull, so I want to say a big thankyou to them for that.’’ The shortlisted finalists in the Restaurant Chef category alongside Dan were Paul Askew, The Art School, Liverpool and Ruth Hansom, The Princess of Shoreditch, London.

Dan McGeorge said: ‘’I didn’t expect to win at all, especially being up against Paul and Ruth. To be recognised by your peers in this way is really special and is one of my career highlights so far. I might be pinching myself for a while to come but it’s fantastic, especially being able to bring another culinary accolade home to the Lakes.’’ The evening included a raffle to raise funds for the Craft Guild of Chef’s joint initiative with UK Curry Connect, ‘Chefs Support Ukraine.’ The campaign asks the hospitality industry to help raise funds for war torn Ukraine.

All donations from their JustGiving page at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/chefsforukraine will go directly to UNHCR.