CHEFS at one of Craven's best-known restaurants will find themselves working fewer hours every week thanks to what bosses have labelled a 'pioneering' four-day week.

Bolton Abbey's 'Burlington Restaurant' at the Devonshire Arms is introducing the new hours in what chiefs say is an effort to retain and attract the catering industry's best talent.

Chefs will work 48 hours a week over four days on 'straight shifts' in the pilot scheme. This will mean an increase in the Burlington's chefs from 11 to 15 chefs. One of the new roles is for an apprentice chef.

Adam Dyke, general manager of The Devonshire Arms, said: “The introduction of shorter hours in The Burlington is a ground-breaking move, which demonstrates our commitment to the sustainability of the hospitality industry, as well as putting the welfare of our chefs first and foremost .

"We wish to reward our chefs in a manner commensurate to their talents and hard work. For many years chefs have notoriously received a raw deal - working ridiculous hours for the love of the job was standard practice.

"At ‘The Dev’ we’re acting proactively to ensure that we are seen as one of the industry leaders – as far as I know we are the first hotel in the north of England to take this step."

A recent survey by the union Unite found that 51 per cent of London chefs suffer from depression as a result of regularly working long hours, while 79 per cent had had an accident or a near miss as a result of fatigue.

Throughout the country there has been a drastic drop in the number of young chefs entering the industry.

The change in working hours at ‘The Burlington’ coincides with the restaurant’s search for a new head chef, to replace Paul Evans, who will leave the business later this month.

The Devonshire is also currently recruiting for the roles of head chef for conference and banqueting, head pastry chef, chef de partie, commis chef, head waiter, serving staff and room attendant.