Peterborough chef’s #StopNoShow campaign to feature on hit Channel 4 show with Simon Rimmer

Peterborough restaurateur Damian Wawrzyniak’s #StopNoShow campaign is to feature on television next week, when he welcomes Channel 4 TV presenter Simon Rimmer to his House of Feasts restaurant to discuss the cost of “no shows” to the food industry.

Thursday, 6th June 2019, 8:10 am
Damian Wawrzyniak with Simon Rimmer during filming of Tricks of the Restaurant Trade.
Damian Wawrzyniak with Simon Rimmer during filming of Tricks of the Restaurant Trade.

The chef, who opened his Polish-inspired restaurant at Eye Green two years ago, has been on a mission to end no shows after revealing missed bookings cost him approximately £3000 in one weekend.

Chef Wawrzyniak’s #StopNoShow campaign - which featured in the Peterborough Telegraph in April last year - has received support from hundreds of restaurant owners in the UK and around the world.

He first drew attention to the issue last February, after revealing that missed bookings were costing chefs and restaurants thousands of pounds per week – often caused by larger groups making reservations and then not arriving for their meal, leaving tables sat empty.

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The Tricks of the Restautrant Trade episode, which will air on Channel 4 on Monday (June 10) at 8.30pm, comes as the mid-market casual dining sector is increasingly squeezed. The high profile collapse of Jamie Oliver’s restaurant chain, Jamie’s Italian last month and the loss of 1000 jobs is the latest in a string of high street closures as restaurants feel the pinch of increased completion, soaring business rates, cautious consumers and escalating prices.

“There is no doubt about it. No shows are threatening the restaurant industry,” says Damian. “Around the country, restaurants take bookings in good faith only to see those tables sitting empty when diners don’t show. When I first started talking about no shows early last year, so many restaurant owners and chefs got in touch to show their support.

“We’ve all read the headlines about even big restaurant chains struggling and closing down and this trend of no shows makes things so much worse. When you book a hotel, you pay a deposit or you pay in full before you stay. The same as when you book a flight – so why should a restaurant reservation be any different?

“I’m so pleased this issue is getting the recognition it deserves – we’re small business owners like millions of others. I’m delighted to welcome Simon and the Tricks of the Restaurant Trade crew to House of Feasts to talk more about no shows.”

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