Celebrity MasterChef visiting guide dog charity was ‘opportunity to thank staff’

Having a meal cooked for the Guide Dogs for the Blind charity’s staff by the Celebrity MasterChef contestants was a “fantastic opportunity” to celebrate their work, according to a manager at the organisation.

Matthew Bottomley, head of breeding operations, said their visit during the competition was also the “perfect way” to celebrate the upcoming 90th anniversary of the first guide dog partnership in the UK.

The contestants cooked a meal for workers at their Guide Dogs National Breeding Centre in Leamington Spa.

The stars split into two teams to prepare a meal for 120 of the charity’s staff.

Among the celebrities was travel presenter Amar Latif, who is blind.

Matthew Bottomley, head of breeding operations at Guide Dogs for the Blind, said: “Having Celebrity MasterChef come to the Guide Dogs National Breeding Centre gave us a fantastic opportunity to come together and give thanks to the site’s amazing staff and volunteers, who are instrumental in caring for generations of our life-changing dogs.

“It was a treat to share a delicious meal and be waited on by celebrities.

“The lunch was a perfect way to kick off what will be a year of celebration throughout 2021 for Guide Dogs, as it will be the 90th anniversary of the first guide dog partnership in the UK.”

(Guide Dogs/PA)

He added that it was “great” to have Latif among the contestants.

“Diverse representation on popular shows like MasterChef can have a huge positive impact on public perceptions of disability,” he said.

“As Amar has shown, people with sight loss can be equally capable and determined in competitions and high-pressure situations – often relying on different skills and gadgets to help them out.”

Conestants including The Apprentice star Thomas Skinner, TV presenter Gethin Jones, actor Phil Daniels, comedian Judi Love, Olympians Sir Matthew Pinsent and Sam Quek and YouTuber Riyadh Khalaf joined Latif in cooking for the staff.

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