School of Food apprentices prepare dinner for The Lord Mayor of Bristol’s Annual Gala at Ashton Gate Stadium

Four School of Food apprentices got to showcase their culinary skills at one of Bristol’s leading charity events.

The Lord Mayor’s Gala Dinner, which took place at Ashton Gate Stadium on March 7th, saw the region’s business and social community come together to support the city’s disadvantaged young people.

Apprentices from the Marriott, Box-E, Berwick Lodge and the Thatchers Cider-owned Railway Inn helped prepare the meal at this prestigious event.

Brian Howe, Training and Development Manager for The School of Food at Weston College, said: “It was a great night, and a real honour for The School of Food to be asked to support the team at Ashton Gate.

Our apprentices did a fantastic job in what was a very busy evening in the kitchens. Experiences like this are what makes The School of Food so special, providing challenging, real-life kitchen experience to complement our exciting masterclass training programme delivered at Ashton Gate Stadium.

A huge thanks to the Lord Mayor and the event organisers for asking us to be part of a special evening.”

The School of Food launched last year to help tackle the local skills shortage. The programme is a partnership between Josh Eggleton, Chef Patron of the Pony & Trap; St Monica Trust; Weston College and Ashton Gate Stadium. It’s aimed at young people looking to break into the industry – as well as those already working in restaurants, hotels and other food businesses.

The programme is unique because each apprentice is mentored by a professional chef, who provides regular assessments and workplace visits to monitor progress. Apprentices attend weekly masterclasses provided from top local chefs – including, co-founder Josh Eggleton, Toby Gritten from The Pump House, Rob Howell from Root, George Livesey from Bulrush, and Adrian Kirikmaa, Food Development Manager at St Monica Trust.

Three cohorts of apprentices have already completed the programme even though it only celebrates its first ‘birthday’ in April. The School of Food already boasts numerous success stories with students completing apprenticeships at high profile restaurants across Bristol and the South West. It also won The 2019 Bristol Life Award for education and was highly commended in the 2018 Crumbs Awards.

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