Simon started his career at Green Farm working with Phillip Lomax, before travelling to the capital to take up a prestigious post at the Hilton, one of the world’s iconic hotels. But the call of Norfolk was never far away and Simon came home as the head chef role at the George Hotel in Cley, putting this wonderful Norfolk restaurant firmly on the map.
Simon has also worked under legendary Norfolk restaurateurs Nigel and Jayne Raffles in their group of Norwich restaurants.
“I’ve always been fortunate enough to be in the right place at the right time at the Grove certainly fits that bill,” said Simon, on his appointment as Head Chef at The Grove. “I grew up in a big Norfolk farmhouse so this is almost like coming home for me, especially with the gardens – we can literally go out and pick fruit, vegetables and herbs and put them straight on the plate. We have a great foundation to create something very special here, building on the great work of previous chefs, and I’m really looking forward to putting my own mark on the Grove.”
One of the country’s foremost foragers, Simon’s expertise in the field is another string to his bow, and the new menus at the Grove will feature some of the best – and rarest – local produce available.
Owner Richard Graveling said: “We’ve worked with Simon on a casual basis over the last couple of years and I’ve always been impressed with his innovation, enthusiasm and knowledge. As a small restaurant we have the luxury of being able to give each individual dish real care and attention and this is where Simon comes into his own, as well as being a talented leader and manager.
The Kitchen Team
Reis Khalil is the steady hand in our kitchen taking increasing responsibility and offering experienced support. Sue Southwell is in charge of our increasingly popular afternoon teas. Sebastian White and apprentice chef Ashley Palmer complete the team, which delivers consistency in standards and an exciting future for the kitchens at The Grove.
Roxanne Davidson, Sharon Powles, Charlotte Frary
Our duty managers are the heart and soul of The Grove, taking charge of the day to day running of the business. They are all highly experienced in the hotel industry, having a combined experience of over 45 years, and are all very knowledgeable about Cromer and surrounding area. Roxanne also deals with any bookings of large groups, functions or weddings.
Front of House
Louise Godfrey’s friendly face has been seen around The Grove for many years. Louise has recently attained an NVQ in hospitality showing her commitment to quality service and awareness of guests’ needs.
We are very lucky to have a wealth of experience in our housekeeping department. Debra Balding heads the department, backed up by Caroline Betts. Together with their team, they keep standards very high. Housekeeping has played a large role in The Grove maintaining its four stars for over 10 years.
Nigel Waller joined us in 2015 taking control of the ever growing demand for maintaining the high standard of the grounds, cottages and The Grove itself. Needless to say, The Grove has never looked better thanks to his background in gardening and renovation for historic properties both in and outside the UK.
At The Grove, we are always on the look out for talent, in our ever-growing business. If you are interested in a career at The Grove, and can deliver to high standards, please feel free to email a CV to firstname.lastname@example.org or see our careers page.