Anthony Worrall Thompson - Biography
Known across Britain as Wozza or AWT, Anthony Worrall Thompson - whose godfather was screen legend Richard Burton - became a household name through appearances on Ready Steady Cook and as the presenter of Daily Cooks Challenge.
Born on May 1, 1951, in Stratford-upon-Avon, Henry Anthony Cardew Worrall Thompson attended a public school in Canterbury before going on to study hotel and catering management at Westminster College. In 1978 he landed a job as a sous chef at Brinkley's Restaurant in London, where his culinary talents obviously made an impression as he was promoted to head chef after just a month. After taking time out with a six-month sabbatical in France, Anthony returned to the restaurant and incorporated all he'd learned abroad in a revamped menu.
He struck out on his own in 1981 when he opened his first restaurant, Ménage a Trois, in Knightsbridge. In a brave move Anthony, who was a favourite of the late Princess Diana, opted to serve only starters and puddings - the first restaurant in London to do so. Since then he has added to his eatery portfolio with Notting Grill, which specialises in British meat and organic ingredients.
His culinary talents were acknowledged in 1987 when he was awarded the prestigious Meilleur Ouvrier de Grande Bretagne award in recognition of his "outstanding craftsmanship in cooking".
Meanwhile he'd made the transition onto the small screen in 1998 with a role as the resident chef and presenter on BBC 2's Food And Drink programme. He consolidated his TV presence with regular appearances on Ready Steady Cook, as well as stints on celebrity specials. Other television ventures include This Morning, Richard & Judy and Masterchef. He also hosted popular cookery programme Saturday Kitchen, and fronted ITV's Daily Cooks Challenge.
Anthony's profile received a further boost in 2003 when he took part in the second series of I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here! in the Australian outback. He's also a prolific author of cookery books and writes for several British newspapers and magazines.
Passionate about organic farming, he grows many of the vegetables and herbs used in his restaurants. He has an avocado farm in Spain where he retreats regularly with his wife Jay and their two children, Toby-Jack and Billie Lara. Back in the UK the family share their Henley-on-Thames base with dogs Jess and Rodney, Nigel the cat and a variety of pigs, fish and chickens.