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Jamie Oliver: $1.7 Million found in TV Chef's Restaurant

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By Stacey Eldridge, Christian Post Contributor
February 15, 2012|5:44 pm

British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver literally "struck gold" when builders uncovered a treasure of $1.7 million in the basement of his new restaurant in Manchester, England.

Builders were busy converting the venue which was once an old bank, when they stumbled upon a vault with hundreds of safety deposit boxes inside, dating back to 1935.

The Bank of England tried, but could not locate the owner, so they used a drill to break open the boxes. Inside they discovered gold, jewelry, a gun and even master tapes by British bands Joy Division and New Order.

The haul was carefully sent to Britain's Treasury Department.

A team of designers and architects began working on the restaurant which will be called "Jamie's Italian," in March 2011. The grand opening is set to be held on Tuesday.

"It's going to be one of the jewels in the Jamie's Italian collection," the celebrity chef said enthusiastically.

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It's unlikely that having to hand over the treasure will be a big loss to the superstar chef, who is estimated to be worth $171.2 million (£109 million) in 2011, which is of course the estimate before the opening of his new Manchester restaurant.

Jamie, who is sometimes known as "The Naked Chef," gained notoriety in the U.S. in his big campaign against the use of processed foods in U.S. schools, striving to improve kids' unhealthy diets in his show "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution."

Oliver is also a very big name in the U.K., having become the face of U.K. supermarket chain Sainsbury, with an endorsement deal totaling $3.1 million (£2 million) a year.

He was also voted as the "Most Inspiring Political Figure of 2005," according to U.K. Channel 4's News annual viewer poll.

 

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