Head Chef - Everglades Hotel
With more than 30 years of experience in the hospitality trade. Desmond Morris has been employed at the Everglades Hotel since 2012 when he arrived as sous chef. He took over the role of Head Chef in 2017 and his duties include overseeing the running of the Everglades' kitchens, ordering produce and designing all the menus.
Desmond completed his catering training at college in his native Birmingham and go his 'first proper cheffing job' at Rusties, a Caribbean silver service restaurant in the city that was owned by chef and television personality Rustie Lee. Desmond, who was 17 at the time, began as a commis chef and stayed there for just over a year.
After that, he spent nearly five years working on Jersey, most notably at Central Park restaurant on St. Helier, where he stayed for three years.
'I knew what I wanted to do, I was still enjoying catering very much and excited about what I was going to do next', recalls Desmond.
At 22, his next position was a little more removed from the commercial kitchen when he took a job with international sandwich chain, Pret a Manger as part of its staff training and development team. He stayed there for around four years, helping staff members to better understand topics such as health and safety and food hygiene.
Desmond had met his wife, Noreen from Derry-Londonderry during his time in Jersey and the pair were married in 1994, leading eventually to a return to the north-west in early 2002.
Desmond's priorities at the moment including changing and improving all the menus in the hotel to make them more innovative and representative of the quality local food that is available.
And his own personal ambition is "excel within the Hastings group".
"I'm very happy at the Everglades and we're really focused on making this this best hotel in the north-west," added Desmond. "I would eventually like to be able to take up other positions within the Hastings group, that's my long-term goal."