A young chef who hopes to one day own food-focussed hotels is in the running to be crowned best in the county.
Harvey Lockwood, 26, spent his first shift in the kitchen at the Best Western Buckingham Hotel immediately after his final school exam, aged 16.
A decade on and having worked under esteemed chefs in Ascott and London, he is one of three nominees for Chef of the Year in the Carlsberg UK Northamptonshire Food and Drink Awards.
Head chef Harvey admitted he quickly filled in his application while running his restaurant Murray’s at Whittlebury Hall, so the nomination was a surprise.
He said: “I think they would have liked that I’m a seasonal chef. I like to use seasonal produce and I’m quite technical too in using modern methods such as smoking. It’s more than just a meal, it’s about serving up an experience.”
Harvey, who lives in Roade with his girlfriend Jodie, went to Winslow Combined School, before Buckingham School and Akeley Wood.
But his passion has always been food as he hopes to earn his third Rosette in the next few years ahead of one day owning a couple of hotels and training up young chefs.
Harvey said: “It’s a lifestyle choice. You do lose your weekends and your evenings but you make some great friends who you stay in contact with.
“It opens a lot of doors too because people remember you. Whatever you put in, you will get out of it and you never stop learning as a chef.”
The winner will be announced during an awards dinner at Royal & Derngate on October 18.