Little Chef drops slimmer logo after 15,000 complaints

LONDON - Little Chef has abandoned plans to slim down its fat chef Charlie, who appears on the logo for the roadside chain, after 15,000 customers complained.

The new slimmer logo, designed by Sheffield-based design agency Dig For Fire, was to be introduced from next year, but the cafe's customers' overwhelming verdict was to keep Charlie's round tummy.

The decision comes as Little Chef introduces a new menu with reduced levels of salt, healthier options, such as salads and cereal and toast, and fresh instead of tinned mushrooms. With the new healthier option food was to come a slimmer logo to match.

Tim Scoble, Little Chef chief exective of the company, said: "We get accusations that he's overweight and a lot of people have also written in to say it was a small child carrying hot food, which they said was dangerous."

As Michelin-starred chef Albert Roux once said, "I would invariably vote in favour of a fat chef. I would say he loves good food, therefore he must be a good chef."

There are 350 Little Chefs across the UK, mostly situated near A roads. Last year, the company was bought by Permira, which also owns Burger King and Travelodge.

The restaurant chain has had an army of fans over the years, including former Prime Minister John Major, who said Little Chef was his favourite place to eat.

The company recently poached Joanne Blake, brand manager at rival Harvester Restaurants, to be its chief marketer following the departure of Anne Elliott.

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