Former pastry chef sues The Fat Duck for £200,000

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 24th October 2019

A former pastry chef at The Fat Duck in Bray is pursuing a legal case against the restaurant, claiming £200,000 in damages for what she says 'are longstanding physical injuries and mental health issues resulting from working there'.

Sharon Anderson, who worked for Heston Blumenthal's restaurant group between June 2014 and November 2015, first at the Bray restaurant and then at the Australian site when the restaurant was temporarily relocated, said that the "fast, arduous and repetitive" work she was given caused her to suffer from repetitive strain injury in her wrist.

According to The Evening Standard, the pastry chef is alleging that the harm caused not only physical, but that she has suffered from depression and anxiety as a result, and has been left unable to work, lift heavy objects, drive or cook since. 

Her pursuit details the tasks which she said led to her injuries, among which, she said, she spent the best part of her working day using tweezers to individually pack 400 wrapped sweets in cellophane bags, made 180 chocolate cards, holding a mould weighing two kilos when full which contorted her wrist for four and a half hours and then piped 550 individual 'whisky gums.'

Additionally, she claims that she was not given adequate rest periods, support, and the restaurant“required her to work under time pressure throughout the day.”

The negligence claim against The Fat Duck is set to be taken to the British High Court for deliberation next year, where it will argue that the tasks given to the pastry chef were common practices in many fine dining restaurants. 

It claims that it moved the pastry chef to lighter duties upon her reporting her injuries, that her workload was not oppressive and that she filed her complaint too late on for it to take appropriate action.

In these challenging times…

…the hospitality landscape has dramatically changed in the last two months, and with that our advertising revenues have all but expired, significantly impacting our business. Despite having to furlough a large portion of our staff, we are still delivering the valuable content and honest information, which hundreds of thousands of you come to The Staff Canteen for. We believe we have a critical role to play in informing and supporting our audience. We need your support right now, more than ever, to keep The Staff Canteen active. Without your financial contributions this would not be possible.

Over the last 12 years, The Staff Canteen has built what has become the go-to platform for chefs and hospitality professionals. As members and visitors, your daily support has made The Staff Canteen what it is today. Our features and videos from the world’s biggest name chefs, are something we are proud of. We have over 500,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social channels, each connecting with chefs across the world. Our editorial and social media team are creating and delivering engaging content every day, to support you and the whole sector.

Your financial support means we remain independent and open to all. We were launched by a chef and remain the voice of chefs and other hospitality professionals.

We need your support to keep delivering the products and content that you love, giving you the platform to share opinions and inspiration. Every contribution whether big or small, means so much.
Support The Staff Canteen from as little as £1 today. Thank you

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 24th October 2019

Former pastry chef sues The Fat Duck for £200,000