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MEET THE TEAM: Rob Telfer, Executive Chef, Matcham’s

Harrogate Convention Centre


The team at Harrogate Convention Centre is dedicated to ensuring every event is a success. From account managers to event planners, and technical experts to chefs, our knowledgeable staff are here to help in any way we can. Get to know some of the key members who work hard behind the scenes to make your banquet, conference or exhibition a smooth and enjoyable experience.

A chef in a white hat stirring a large pot filled with delicious food.
Rob Telfer, Executive Chef, Matcham’s

Who are you?

I’m a lifelong chef, initially working in London, then teaching before moving into events, mainly in stadia. I am now living in Harrogate and serving as Executive Chef of Matcham’s the in-house catering team at Harrogate Convention Centre.

What is a typical day like?

Being a chef, there is no typical day and that’s why I love my job. However, normally I arrive just before 7 a.m., start with a cuppa, check emails, calendar, diary review, then check prep lists and function sheets with the team. I regularly oversee service.

Four chefs happily posing for a photo in a kitchen.

What is the best part of your job?

Variety and creativity, teamwork, and positive feedback.

What is the biggest challenge?

Jointly current costs of ingredients and staff, as well as shortage of trained chefs are the biggest challenges within the hospitality sector.

Tell us about the proudest moment in your career.

I had the honour of cooking for the late Queen Elizabeth three times - once at West Ham United FC, when she opened the new ‘Bobby Moore’ Stand at Upton Park, and twice when I worked at Fortum & Mason where I was introduced to her.

Chef standing near counter filled with fresh ingredients.

What is the most remarkable trend you’ve observed in event catering?

The evolution of street food and the variety and diversity of cuisines have been most remarkable. By introducing ideas, techniques and ingredients I ensure Matcham’s keep ahead of the trends.

In one sentence, what makes Matcham’s special?

We strive to exceed client expectations every day through our hospitality and fantastic food made with the best Yorkshire produce from local suppliers, and that makes Matcham's special.

Name one must-try food item here at Matcham’s.

Our award-winning Steak & Ale Pie (gold medal winner in the National Pie Awards) and our soon-to-arrive 7oz Sausage Roll. You won't be disappointed.

A chef proudly presents a tray of delicious food

What do you look for in food offerings at events?

Innovative, original, creative, well-presented and appropriately priced. It is also important that the food offered is healthy, sustainable, caters for different dietary needs, and made with high-quality, locally sourced ingredients.

What’s your favourite restaurant in Harrogate?

Domo Japanese Cuisine - consistently high-quality ingredients, great wine, staff and excellent value.

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