Chefs kick-off Farm Africa fundraising drive with football tournament

By Emma Eversham

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Restaurant sat bains Kenya

The two teams in the final of last Sunday's football tournament, held to raise funds for Farm Africa
The two teams in the final of last Sunday's football tournament, held to raise funds for Farm Africa
Staff from 16 restaurants, including Tuddenham Mill, The Fat Duck and Restaurant Sat Bains, have kick-started a major fundraising drive for Farm Africa by competing in a five-a-side football tournament.

Teams came together in Cambridge on Sunday to compete in the contest and help kick-off a major fundraising drive for Paul Foster of Tuddenham Mill, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal head chef Ashley Palmer-Watts, Restaurant Sat Bains head chef John Freeman and Paolo de Tarso, senior maître'd at Bar Boulud, who next month will climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa for the charity. 

Foster, who organised the football tournament, said he been persuaded by industry colleague and friend Palmer-Watts to join him on the climb after he'd watched coverage of the chef's previous trip to Kenya on BigHospitality. 

"I truly enjoyed it, and it stuck with me, so this seemed like the perfect next step," he said. “I love what Farm Africa is doing in Africa. They are helping with funds and raising awareness, but what I love is that they also teaching self-reliance and sustainability. This can be passed on to future generations and have lasting meaning. Hopefully with projects like this, we can end hunger.”

Sunday's football tournament, which saw each team pay a fee to enter, was won 3-0 by a team from specialist catering butcher Direct Meats. Foster hailed the day a success on Twitter. 


Football spectators were also able to win raffle prizes on the day, which included lunch for four at L'Ortolan; a meal and stay at Tuddenham Mill and a day's course at the Taste Academy cook school. 

As well as the football, those taking part in the climb are hoping to raise cash with a host of fundraising events. On August 4, Palmer-Watts will take part in a 100km sponsored bike ride around London while Freeman has set up an online auction for people to bid for him to cook a six-course dinner at their homes. Bar Boulud, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal and Tuddenham Mill will also be adding a discretionary £1 to diners' bills in the run-up to the climb. 

The Mount Kilimanjaro climb follows Palmer-Watts' trip to Kenya with Farm Africa last year where he witnessed the work the charity is doing to help tackle hunger in eastern Africa first-hand. 

You can follow the chefs in real time as they train for and take on Kilimanjaro via their dedicated blog: or via #Chefkili on Twitter. 

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