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World finally taking notice of British food scene, says chef honoured with MBE

Award-winning British chef and restaurateur Simon Rogan said the culinary world is finally starting to “take notice” of the British food scene as he was made an MBE.

Mr Rogan achieved an impressive three Michelin stars at his flagship Cumbrian restaurant L’Enclume.

“I go around the world these days, trying to promote not only my restaurant but the Lake District and the UK food scene, and that’s starting to take up,” he said.

“This is the icing on the cake, I think, to be recognised in this way and I’m truly honoured.”

The chef said the Princess Royal, who he met during the investiture ceremony at Windsor Castle, was “very knowledgeable” about his career and it was “truly magical” to have been recognised.

“She knows about my farm in the Lake District, us growing our own produce and how I became a chef.”

Mr Rogan said the hospitality industry has become a more popular choice with young people since he started.

Simon Rogan speaking to the Princess Royal at Windsor Castle
Simon Rogan speaking to the Princess Royal at Windsor Castle (Jonathan Brady/PA)

He added: “Before it was a job that you went into if you failed everything else, but now I think people want to come into it because they think it’s an attractive proposition.

“It’s never been a better time to be a chef in the UK. It’s an amazing industry to be in.

“I always thought that, winning three Michelin stars, which is every chef’s dream, was the ultimate accolade, but this is definitely on a level with it.”

Other recipients included the former boss of Sky News, John Ryley, who said he discussed the “importance of truth in journalism” with Anne as he was made an OBE.

Mr Ryley, who ran the news organisation for 17 years up until last year, said we now “live in a world of a lot of myths, truth and disinformation”.

John Ryley at Windsor Castle
John Ryley was honoured at an investiture ceremony (Andrew Matthews/PA)

He said finding out he was going to receive the honour was a “fantastic delight”.

“We talked about the importance of truth in journalism, and the need for news organisations to focus on the facts,” he said.

“What is a fact is now really up for debate. Whereas 40 years ago, those sort of discussions didn’t happen.”

Mr Ryley, who has worked on “all the big stories of the last 40 years”, praised the decision of the judiciary to allow certain judges’ comments to be broadcast.

“I’m really pleased to see that the judiciary in England have lifted the ban,” he said. “I think it is really important for the future, the judiciary and public’s trust in it.”

The former Sky News boss said failing to “convince the news desks that climate change was a very important story” was something he now regretted.