Jamie Oliver turned to family for support after the collapse of his restaurant empire

The TV chef has described his family as 'the best antidote in the world'

Updated on 06 February 2020 • Written By Henry Coldstream

Jamie Oliver turned to family for support after the collapse of his restaurant empire

TV chef Jamie Oliver has spoken about how important his family were for him in dealing with the collapse of his restaurant empire last year.

In an interview with PEOPLE magazine, he described how coming home to his wife and children after a day dealing with the ever-growing failure of his restaurants, was “the best antidote in the world”.

The majority of Oliver’s UK restaurants went into administration eight months ago leading to all 22 of his Jamie’s Italian restaurants, his London restaurant Fifteen, and his steakhouse Barbecoa all closing their doors. It is also estimated that creditors have lost around £80 million from the collapse.

Whilst on The Graham Norton Show back in November, he spoke about the collapse saying: “I've had the best of it – I don't know anyone who had it better than me – and I've had the worst of it – that's life. You have to focus it to a positive.” But he has now spoken of how something like this really puts everything into perspective in terms of what is ultimately important. He said: “When you’re tested like I’ve been, all that matters is friends, family and health.”

Oliver and his wife Jools have been married for approaching 20 years, having met in High School and have five children – River, 3, Buddy, 9, Petal, 10, Daisy, 16, and Poppy, 17. He also recently announced that they will be renewing their vows this June to mark their 20 year wedding anniversary.

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Despite, the closure of most of his UK restaurants, Oliver is still having a lot of success elsewhere, as well as continuing to produce a vast array of cookbooks and TV shows. He has also announced plans already to open a new restaurant concept in South East Asia.

However, one of his few UK restaurants still open – the Jamie’s Italian in Gatwick Airport – has recently been making headlines as it has amassed a number of negative online reviews which have slammed the food as “foul”.

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