The head chef at a leading Cornish hotel group is implementing a new strategy aimed at striking a better work/life balance.

Red Hotels, owner of the Scarlet and Bedruthan, recently promoted Tom Hunter (pictured), previously the Scarlet’s head chef, to executive head of both properties.

And he has wasted little time in making his mark, creating a new “groundbreaking” set of kitchen shift, staffing and production processes.

He claims the initiative means that chefs will start to experience the enigmatic work/life balance that is so often a missing ingredient for many working in the industry.

An accompanying new recruitment programme also offers potential chefs, and their friends or partners, a night’s stay in the Bedruthan Hotel.

Hunter explained: “Nobody chooses life as a chef if they want an easy, 9-5 job and 15 hour shifts are not an uncommon practice.

“However, as a family man, I want to achieve balance in my life. I’m also of the firm belief that enjoying life away from work means you are clearly more focussed and committed within work. This is also part of the Red Hotels’ philosophy and this is why I’m determined to create and drive a team that also has the opportunity to make the most of their lives, and their careers, in this way.

“All chefs will be contracted to 45 hours a week over five days. There will also be a mixture of shift patterns across the two hotels, ensuring that everyone has two days off a week. To make all this happen, it is true that, we will probably be employing more chefs than other similar operations. However, I have also introduced a new prep or production kitchen to ease the pressures on the service kitchens in both hotels.”