A CHEF who attacked two colleagues as violence flared in the kitchen of a luxury Lakes hotel has been spared prison.
Peter Thomas Dowdall, 37, threw a steel mixing bowl at Daniel Drinkwater after being asked to tackle a job he thought others should be doing. He then punched Mr Drinkwater several times and hit him with a metal foam gun lid at Armathwaite Hall, near Keswick.
As staff members intervened, head pastry chef Dowdall picked up large knife which, as he tried to free himself from a struggle, caused a cut to the face of Conor Johnson just an inch from his eye.
Dowdall, who had worked at the hotel for six years but since lost his job, admitted assaulting both sous-chefs, causing them actual bodily harm during an incident at lunchtime on February 9 this year.
Carlisle Crown Court heard Dowdall was affected by work stress and pressure at the time, and suffering depression due to personal problems. He had since sought professional help for his issues, and been offered work at a different Lakes hotel.
After considering references as part of what he called “substantial personal mitigation”, Recorder Tom Gilbart suspended an eight-month jail term for 18 months. Dowdall, of Monkhouse Road, Workington, must complete 100 hours unpaid work and a rehabilitation activity requirement.
Recorder Gilbart told him: “This was a very serious incident. You used weapons to assault your colleagues in what should be a safe environment – the workplace.
“You should be thoroughly ashamed of what you did.”