Almost £8K has been raised for hospitalised chef who has been forced to close restaurant

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 29th July 2016

A crowdfunding page set up to support a hospitalised chef who has been forced to close his restaurant has reached almost £8K in the last 24 hours.

Si Toft is the head chef and co-owner of a small one AA-rosette bistro restaurant, The Dining Room in Abersoch, Gwynedd. Acting as a one man band, Si was forced to close the restaurant after he was rushed to hospital on Wednesday.

Speaking to The Staff Canteen, about the response from the crowdfunding page, Si said: "It's incredible, I think it's struck a chord with a few smaller places in our situation, small teams, one man kitchens etc. but mainly I think this industry is very tight, we do look after our own, I'm not going to lie it's really weird being on this side."

Showing his support for his fellow chef, Gary Usher was instrumental in setting up the crowdfunding page and took to Twitter to encourage others in the industry to show their support.

Gary told the Staff Canteen yesterday, “I’ve only met him once, but he’s a lovely guy.

“He has a tiny little restaurant in Abersoch and he’s a one man band in the kitchen. Once he’s out of the kitchen, that’s it, he has to close.”

>>> Related: Gary Usher backs crowdfunding page to help ill chef

Talking to The Staff Canteen regarding the response on Twitter, Si said: "We didn't have a clue and to be honest I was so out of it I don't think it really registered until the morning."

In support of Si and his family, Gary is holding a special guest chef night on Sunday at Sticky Walnut where all money will be donated to the Si Toft fund.

Following the news of how much money has been raised, Si’s wife, Joanna Toft left a note on the crowdfunding page this morning expressing hers and Si’s gratitude.

“Your supportive comments and unbelievable generosity had me in floods last night! What you've all done is amazing and more than enough to allow us to pay staff, suppliers, rent, etc. while Si takes the time he needs to recover.”

At time of print, the crowdfunding page stood at £7,701 from 195 supporters.

By Michael Parker

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 29th July 2016

Almost £8K has been raised for hospitalised chef who has been forced to close restaurant