A Michelin-starred restaurant has shared the touching moment that a customer offered to employ all of its staff it cannot keep in work while it temporarily closes due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Hampton Manor and Peel’s Restaurant in Hampton in Arden, Solihull, West Midlands, has launched three new ventures including takeaway food, a pop-in shop, and a private chef service, but was still facing the prospect of having to lay off more than 30 people.
But the hotel and restaurant has hailed the “unexpected kindness” from a customer who offered contracts at Aldi to all of its employees.
Hampton Manor is among businesses across the country that have been left with an uncertain future after the government advised people to stay away from pubs, bars, restaurants and clubs in what business leaders called a crippling blow for the hospitality industry.
Hampton Manor has launched its Peel’s To The People initiative to keep its team cooking and to provide services to the community.
It includes: Peel’s on Wheels which delivers meal packs to people’s door; a drive-thru service of “wood-fired feasts” from its smokehouse with the option to dine on Hampton Manor’s 45-acre estate; a pop-in shop dubbed The Peel’s Larder offering cupboard essentials and a private chef service called Peel’s Lock In that will see people be able to hire the services of one of its Michelin-starred chefs in their own home.
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But in a statement it said: “Despite these efforts over 30 people faced being laid off before a regular client of their board room offered contracts to all their employees.
“Aldi the supermarket chain face unprecedented demand in their stores and Hampton Manor’s team will now bring their magic customer service to stacking the supermarket shelves and keeping the store pristine.
“In response the Manor’s remaining team have committed to getting a free meal to vulnerable people in isolation for every meal they sell through their new home delivery, drive thru and pop up bakery and wine shop.”
In an Instagram post on Wednesday, Hampton Manor said as it planned its future the team had “feasted together, drank some wine and began to reimagine our short term future”.
It said: “We won’t lie down, give up or roll over. We’re here to ask ourselves what problems we can solve in our community at this time and how we can step up to the plate.
“In the midst of this one of our customers confirmed they would employ all our employees that we can’t keep in work... that is the world of unexpected kindness! We’re in it together... we’ll come through it together.”