A popular TV chef has started work at a Cornish tourist attraction ahead of its 30th anniversary.

TV chef, Nat Tallents, who was recently seen on BBC1’s ‘Great British Menu,’ has joined the Lost Gardens of Heligan in St Austell as Head of Hospitality and Development Chef.

Tallents first came to prominence in ‘Masterchef The Professionals’ (2012) and was a semi-finalist in Britain’s National Chef of the Year in both 2019 and 2021.

Nat said: "Heligan is all about food.

"The award-winning restoration of its Victorian Productive Gardens was the first of its kind, a living archive to the gardeners who, in an age before refrigeration, supplied the needs of the estate for 365 days a year.

"Today over 500 varieties of mostly heritage fruit and vegetables are grown here – culminating in our annual Harvest celebration (October 9 to 24).

"Heligan is also home to the first Rare Breed Farm Park in the South West, which we showcase through events such as our Rare Breeds Month in September but I want to extend the offering further so visitors can really see how the gardens and estate work together."

"Lockdown gave me the opportunity to pause and consider what was important to me.

"It was the first time I’d cooked for myself in a long time and I found I wanted to know more about the provenance of the food I ate."

"Heligan has a sensitive land management policy that appealed to me.

Read Next:

"Farmland is managed using a mixture of traditional and rare breed livestock and poultry and sustainable, low intensity techniques, practiced here for centuries.

"Getting close to the land and working in harmony with natural habitats has helped me appreciate the food I work with more.

"We all need to understand the process of where food comes from and what a joy it is to cook with fresh produce.

"Next year will be the 30th anniversary of the gardens opening to the public and I want to showcase the unique palette of flavours that is Heligan.

"The Gardens are still one of the UK’s top tourism destinations, an inspiration to gardeners worldwide.

"The skills and knowledge of the gardeners that worked here need to be celebrated, by preserving the past and learning from it, we protect our future and have a good time doing it."

Ramon van de Velde, managing director of the Lost Gardens of Heligan, said: "We are delighted Nat has joined us as ‘Head of Hospitality and Development Chef.

"The Gardens are unique in many ways and a living entity that continue to evolve.

"Nat’s knowledge and vision will only enhance the visitor experience, she is a natural fit to the team and we are excited by some of the plans she has."