Award-winning pub hires Ukrainian refugees

The Riverside at Aymestrey has taken on Ukrainian refugees as part of a necessary recruitment drive.

The Riverside at Aymestrey in Herefordshire has taken on three Ukrainian refugees as part of a necessary recruitment drive, as the business goes from strength to strength.

A total of eight new employees have joined the team in order to meet the demands of the burgeoning business. The drive follows The Riverside being named Herefordshire Pub & Bar of the Year as part of the 2023 National Pub & Bar Awards. 

"We are delighted to have been able to give these roles to local people and to also employ three Ukrainian refugees, one of whom will be our new pastry chef," says Andy Link, chef patron at The Riverside (pictured). "Following the National Pub & Bar Awards best pub in Herefordshire accolade, we have been busier than ever."  

Other posts for the new team members include front-of-house staff, housekeepers and kitchen porters.

"We are very happy to welcome these new team members to the pub, and hope they will enjoy working here," adds Link. "We are committed to making The Riverside a great place to work by encouraging team members; listening to new ideas people put forward, and making our work/life balance and pay/benefits packages attractive and rewarding. 

"The hospitality industry has had a bad reputation for the way staff are treated, but it doesn’t have to be that way, and things are changing. We have partnered with Hospitality Action to provide our entire team with wellbeing support through the Employee Assistance Programme. This provides people with free counselling, advice and training. Our aim is to become a leading employer in the hospitality industry."

Above and beyond

Link is also a Slow Food Movement’s Marches Chef Alliance member and is responsible for bringing so-called ‘forgotten foods’ such as the Shropshire prune damson and the unique Mortimer Forest venison back onto the menu.

The pub also aims to help the natural world recover and to that end has planted 200 native species such as crab apple, hawthorn and blackthorn within The Riverside’s grounds and has launched a Community Fund to support local initiandves such as pond creation, meadow restoration, and bird and bat box building.

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