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The Yorke Arms

Frances Atkins
The Yorke Arms

The Yorke Arms

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Ramsgill-in-Nidderdale
Harrogate
HG3 5RL

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The Chef

 

Frances Atkins

A love of cooking and crafting handmade food has been with Frances Atkins throughout her varied and accomplished life. Growing up in Ilkley, West Yorkshire, close to the Yorkshire Dales she now calls her home, she has “always cooked”. Baking with her mother, cooking the family tea in exchange for clothes, harassing her parents into throwing dinner parties so she could experiment with dishes such as coq au vin and boeuf bourguignon – she says “there was never any question in my mind that I should do anything else with my life.”

Her first job in the catering industry was working in a local deli. Having spotted a business opportunity, she began supplying the shop with her own handmade cheeses – produced with the knowledge she gained from reading a book, and aged in the basement of her parent’s house. She told us: “I was very young and I loved it, it was a very creative thing. I could make cheeses because my parents had some cellars, so I made cheese down there and sold it to the local delicatessen and it became quite a good source of revenue. That was really what I was interested in at the time and I got a bit of a thrill out of it.”

Frances Atkins