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Michelin Chef Richard Turner Carries on Despite Tragedy

Michelin Chef Richard Turner, service continues despite tragedy

Michelin Chef Richard Turner, service continues despite tragedy

Michelin Chef Richard Turner Runs for Birmingham Homeless

Chef Richard Turner, of Michelin Starred Turners Restaurant, in Harborne has today signed up for the Birmingham Mini-Marathon on 1st June, following a soul searching  Christmas.

Chef Richard Turner had some shock news a few days before Christmas when his home in Edgbaston burnt down – loosing almost all his belongings.

Chef Richard Turner, did not want to let his customers down by closing his restaurant, despite being made homeless. He has now vowed to ‘give something back’ after the soul searching time he spent in hotels and even sleeping on the floor of his Michelin restaurant over Christmas in his chef whites!

“Christmas and New Year were a nightmare, but I didn’t want to tell anybody because I didn’t want to let the customers down. I just had to keep my head down and get on with my cooking. I had a full restaurant on Christmas Day, what else could I do. The stress was horrendous.
“On one night, I had nowhere to go and had to sleep on the floor in the restaurant in my whites – it really makes you think.”

Chef Richard Turner said the alarm was raised by his neighbour, in Harborne Road, Edgbaston, who called him at his restaurant at 7pm.
Mr Turner said: “My neighbour telephoned me at seven o’clock on the Wednesday before Christmas. He said ‘You’d better come home now, your house is on fire’.
“I thought he was winding me up, so I told him to get lost because I was busy during service in the restaurant. But he told me he was being serious, that there were fire engines on the drive and my house was going up in flames.”
Richard  added that he and his wife dashed home and there were three fire engines on his drive. He said: “I was gutted. One of the firemen saw how upset me and my wife were, so he went back into the house and got the presents out from under the tree.
“He came back out on a ladder, wearing a black coat with a sack over his shoulder – I had to laugh, even though my house was on fire. I said ‘You’re four days early, mate’. The firemen were unbelievable but it was sickening to deal with, I felt totally exposed.”

Richard who had lived at the property for two years, had to stay with friends, family and at hotels during Christmas., and even spent one night in the restaurant floor “It really brings things home to you when you lose everything like this, and makes you really think about others who are not as lucky as us, and don’t have a home permanently” comments Richard “The night on the floor made me really think about what is important in life – I am just glad we put a carpet down in the restaurant a few weeks before, as it was cold that night!”

“It focuses the mind when you’ve got nowhere to go. I came back into work and I was wearing my chef’s jacket, my chef’s trousers and my shoes. That was all that I owned in the world, alongside my wife’s Christmas presents.”
Richard  is also revamping his restaurant menu, following the fire. He said: “It’s given me the focus to change a few things, and go back to what is important. I’m re-introducing the original a la carte that gained us our Michelin Star four years ago, and will be holding a charity event in the Spring. We have even given our website a relaunch, going live this week. It made me more determined than ever on push on and improve everything that we do – I think the phrase is out with the old in with the new!”

James Day of Leisure Marketing Midlands LTD who has been working closely with Richard over recent weeks on his new website and branding added “We were aware that Richard had suffered this personal trauma over Christmas, but he barely skipped a beat, and ensured that the ‘show must go on’ not missing a service, appointment or slowing down with any decisions – it just goes to show the level of professionalism these guys have to maintain when they are at the top of their game – the site was finished on time, and has gone live”

Richard is now planning to raise money to help local homeless charity ‘Sifa-Fireside’ who focus on homeless people with desperate needs for shelter, food, and counselling “Sifa is a great organisation helping the really needed homeless in the City, and I think in the circumstances, a rather appropriate name. I will be holding my own charity dinner in the Spring with me new a la carte menu, and will be running Great Midlands fun Run on Sunday 10th June, for sponsorship of from my friends customers – Maybe all the Chefs Alliance guys should join in and we could raise a whole lot of cash for the city – I’d like to see some of those boys running the streets of Birmingham after service” Richard Laughs.– “though I would nt guarantee we will all run at the same pace!”

www.sifafireside.co.uk

www.greatmidlandsfunrun.com

Turners Restaurant Birmingham’s New website

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