Award-winning chef denied UK settled status after Brexit – despite living there for 15 years
Top chef Damian Wawrzyniak who has cooked for the British royal family and the London Olympics, has been told he cannot remain indefinitely in the UK after Brexit despite having lived in the country for 15 years.
The award-wining chef whose House of Feasts restaurant in Peterborough has appeared in the Michelin Guide was told by the British Home Office that he didn’t qualify for settled status and had only been awarded pre-Settled Status, which is generally for EU nationals who have not lived in the UK continuously for five years.
Stunned Wawrzyniak took to Twitter after receiving the government ruling today, angrily posting a list of his achievements and entitlement to stay in the county.
The 39-year-old posted: “"Have lived in the UK for 15 years. Always employed, without gaps, now running own restaurant.
“Paid thousands of pounds in taxes.
"Employing several people in our restaurant, directly and indirectly.
"NOT GOOD ENOUGH TO GET SETTLED STATUS. This is ridiculous."
The dad-of-two added: “Just to remind you: I am constantly on British Meida, I have cooked twice for @RoyalFamily I was head chef at London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics!
“Running businesses since 2008, voted UK Top 10 Food Pioneer by @bbcgoodfood … and more and more and more… .”
If the Home Office’s decision is not overturned, it will mean that Wawrzyniak, who was also awarded a Knights Cross Award from President Duda last year for his services to Polish cuisine, will be forced to apply again for full settled status within five years.
Any EU citizen who moved to Britain before October 31 should be allowed to stay, as long as they qualify for settled status.
But more than 2million EU citizens have not yet applied for settled status in the UK, and the deadline to apply is only December 2020.
The chef’s partner and her father were both granted Settled Status, but he and his partner’s mother were only given pre-Settled status without any explanation.
Wawrzyniak says he will now appeal the decision.