Renowned chef Andrew Fairlie is “absolutely humbled” by messages of support after revealing he is stepping down from his two Michelin-starred restaurant due to a terminal brain tumour.
He has been fighting the illness since 2005 with chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery but was told in June no further treatment was available, The Times Scotland reported.
Mr Fairlie is now retiring from the restaurant at Gleneagles, which he established in 2001, to arrange a wedding with his partner Kate White and tweeted they will marry on Wednesday.
He said goodbye to colleagues in the kitchen on Saturday and will officially hand over the keys to the head chef Stevie McLaughlin, general manager Dale Dewsbury and his business partner Gregor Mathieson in February.
Restaurant Andrew Fairlie at the luxury Pertshire hotel is the only one in Scotland with two Michelin stars.
Mr Fairlie told The Times: “Giving up my restaurant kitchen was the hardest part.
“The fact that I’ll never be back, never have that buzz and atmosphere of the kitchen again, was very emotional.
“But it’s dangerous for me to be there. I’d just be a liability.”
He added: “I had so many sleepless nights worrying that my life’s work would turn to dust.
“My worst case scenario was that Gleneagles would take back the space and give it to some other chef.
“I am very grateful that it is not the case and that my legacy will continue.”
Dozens of people have sent messages of support to Mr Fairlie including First Minister Nicola Sturgeon who tweeted: “Sending my thoughts and best wishes to @AndrewFairlie1 and his family – such a great talent and wonderful ambassador for our country.”
He thanked those who had sent messages.
He tweeted: “Absolutely humbled by the love and good wishes from all over the world that’s why our industry is so special looking forward to marrying my rock and true love kate tomorrow.”
Sharan Pasricha, founder and chief executive of Ennismore, which owns Gleneagles, said: “We’re immensely proud of all of Andrew’s achievements including being Scotland’s only two Michelin star restaurant for the past 12 years, and are delighted to continue the legacy of such an important and cherished culinary icon through the renewal of our long-term partnership with the restaurant.
“Importantly, Restaurant Andrew Fairlie is a close-knit team of experts who share Andrew’s vision, drive and passion for excellence, and who work tirelessly together to offer one of the finest culinary experiences in the world.
“We’re confident that, under Gregor, Stevie and Dale’s leadership, this deep-rooted ethos will be preserved, developed and enhanced for future guests, and we’ll continue working closely with them to ensure it remains at the pinnacle of the global culinary scene.”