A CHEF from Lyme Regis will appear in the Great British Menu 2020.

Harriet Mansell who owns the pop-up restaurant Robin Wylde in Lyme Regis, competed in the South West heats of the cooking programme.

Harriet, aged 32, grew up in Sidmouth, Devon and trained to become a chef after studying politics and history at university.

She took her first ‘proper’ kitchen job with Lyme Regis’s Mark Hix in London before going to culinary school and interning at the prestigious Noma in Denmark, followed by a couple of Michelin-starred kitchens in London.

She then went on to work in the superyacht industry where she worked as a private chef for high-profile clients including the Murdoch family.

She opened the pop-up restaurant Robin Wylde in Lyme Regis last year, where her food is based around the seasons, local produce and foraging.

Harriet said: “Basically I got approached by producers for the show around the end of last June after operating at the Pop-Up Kitchen for six weeks.

“To say I was surprised is an understatement because the calibre of chef who appear on the show is so high.

“When they came to me they said they had heard about my pop-up restaurant and were very impressed with what I’ve been doing, and wanted me to take part to showcase the pop-up scene.

“I was up against some exceptionally talented chefs. I had to submit a menu, the brief was to celebrate 150 years of children’s literature and illustration.

“It was unbelievably challenging, way more challenging than I expected. You go into the kitchen to compete with other chefs with film crews all around you.

“At first, you’re so overwhelmed, but you quickly become accustomed to it. I’m not one for seeing pictures of myself, but I actually found it alright.”

She added: “I made some great friends and it was one of the most positive things I’ve ever done.

“I never thought I would appear on TV and it’s hard to say whether I’d do it again because it takes up a lot of your time, especially when I’m trying to set up a restaurant.”

Harriet has submitted a planning application to convert the pottery shop Whoopsadaisy on Silver Street into a restaurant to provide a permanent residence for Robin Wylde in Lyme Regis.

You can see her in the latest series of the Great British Menu on BBC 2. The programme airs on Wednesdays at 8pm.