30 January 2007, 18:28 PM
  • A former mechanical engineer has opened a delicatessen after a complete career change.

Michael Bullivant finally fulfilled one of his life-long goals and is now the happy owner of Bullivants Delicatessen, in Chorley. “I always wanted to work in the food industry. My wife asked me to think of my dream job; the answer was to own a deli,” says Mr Bullivant.

But it hasn’t been easy and the decision has required some sacrifices. While waiting for the right property, Mr Bullivant decided to work in a restaurant kitchen. “I left my relatively good income in London and returned home to Lancashire to take up a post as a kitchen porter on the minimum wage to gain some experience of the food industry,” he says. Adding, “I began showing my skills in creating some dishes when the chef left and the kitchen was short staffed. Nigel Haworth of Northcote Manor ate my food and asked who made his lunch. Then, he offered me a trial at one of his restaurants ‘The Three Fishes’, which led to the offer of a position in his restaurant.”

However, fate intervened and when he was offered a job in Nigel Haworth’s kitchen, Mr Bullivant was just about to sign a lease on the deli. “Two life changing opportunities in one week. I had to take the delicatessen, I’d worked too hard over the last two years finding the right property to turn it down at that stage,” he explains.

The shop aims to provide high quality products, which are unique enough to get people excited, yet not too obscure. “I try to stock things that people are confident buying, but a bit out of the ordinary,” he says.

Mr Bullivant, who gets his love for food from his mother and several years spent in Spain, has witnessed a very positive response to the store opening. He adds, “Nearly everybody has been very complimentary about the look of the shop and indeed the products we supply.”