Buzzworks Holdings announces new Chef Trainer in light of expansion

Buzzworks Holdings, one of Scotland’s leading independent restaurant and bar operators, has today (10 November) welcomed a new Chef Trainer to the business.

Neil Clark, who has over 20 years’ experience cheffing and working in some of Scotland’s top restaurants, has joined the award-winning family business to help oversee chef development and retention as Buzzworks focuses on its continued growth strategy.

The Scottish company, recently named in the Top 100 Companies to Work For, currently operates 16 prestigious venues across Scotland, employing over 650 team members.

As the business expands further, with two new venues set to open in the near future, employment opportunities for chefs will continue to rise. Buzzworks is keen to ensure it trains and develops its kitchen team to create a positive working environment, whilst attracting top new talent keen to learn from some of the best in the business.

In his role as Chef Trainer, Neil will be tasked with building a world class training and development structure that is fit for growth, encouraging the continued development and progression of its team within the kitchens, whilst attracting and developing Buzzworks’ chefs of the future.

Most recently, Buzzworks has launched an industry recognised chef apprenticeship scheme, set to include culinary masterclasses, educational excursions and active mentoring when working alongside skilled and experienced chefs, which Neil will also oversee as his remit.

Neil, who resides in Troon, has joined Buzzworks from Six by Nico where he was instrumental in developing and rolling out its Home X brand. He has worked in some of the country’s top kitchens for over 20 years in a number of Head Chef and operational roles including Braehead Foods, Edenmill Farm and La Vallee Blanche.

Neil also worked for four years under Geoffrey Smeddle at Conran restaurants, with Geoffrey having now held a Michelin star for the past 12 years.

Nicola Watt, Head of People at Buzzworks Holdings, said, “Welcoming Neil as our new Chef Trainer is a fantastic addition for the business, with the role being specially created to ensure the development and retention of our chefs, whilst maintaining the highest standards of our dishes served within all of our venues.

“Neil’s appointment is testament to our ambition of growing Buzzworks further and is essential in ensuring we continue to provide a positive working environment for all employees, including our kitchen team, by providing the knowledge and tools to deliver an exceptional experience to our customers with each and every meal.”

Neil shared, “Much has been made of the current predicament of hospitality businesses struggling to attract and retain talent, especially within a kitchen setting.

'Buzzworks and my own ethos are very much aligned in that if you challenge chefs, provide excellent training opportunities and clear pathways to grow within the business, you will create a happy and multi skilled restaurant brigade – and I am here to help do just that.

“It is an exciting time to join Buzzworks, both with its portfolio of existing and up-and-coming venues, alongside the kitchens producing excellent dishes that make use of Scotland’s natural larder.

'I’m looking forward to ensuring we continue to attract and retain the best talent within the industry, whilst helping to influence our strategic direction and build on the continued success of the company through our food output.”