Chef Academy helps Sam on his way to culinary success

Sam Bransby at the Swan Hotel , Bedford.
Sam Bransby at the Swan Hotel , Bedford.

A budding chef will spend the next year honing his culinary skills at a Bedford hotel as part of a nationwide apprenticeship programme.

Redefine|BDL Hotels’ Chef Academy will see Sam Bransby undertake a 12-month apprenticeship at the Bedford Swan Hotel, which is managed by the UK’s largest independent hotel management company.

Throughout the programme, which was designed by Redefine|BDL Hotels in conjunction with national training provider, Lifetime Training, Sam will receive practical and theoretical training from a dedicated mentor – the hotel’s head chef, Adam Potten.

The combination of on-the-job learning and specialist masterclasses will lead to a Level 2 Qualification in Professional Cookery, as well as guaranteed employment at Commis Chef level at one of Redefine|BDL Hotels’ properties for one year following graduation.

Sam, 20, will also have the chance to win the coveted title of Star Apprentice – and one weeks’ work experience in South Africa – following a ‘Great British Bake Off’ style finale next year.

Sam, who previously worked as a commis chef, said: “I was really keen to get my Level 2 qualification under my belt, so was delighted to be given the chance to take part in the Chef Academy. I really feel like my career is on a definite path now.

“I’m looking forward to meeting lots of different chefs over the course of the year, and to learning different methods and skills. My main ambition is to, one day, run my own kitchen.”

Adam Potten, head chef at the Bedford Swan, will act as Sam’s mentor. He said: “The Chef Academy is a fantastic opportunity for Sam to further his career alongside the rest of the recruits.

“He will have the chance to work under my supervision in the kitchens, and will take part in regular masterclasses in areas ranging from fish and sustainability to pastry. It’ll allow Sam to explore potential specialisms, and his creative side.

“He was an obvious candidate for the role, and I’m looking forward to seeing them progress and grow over the next year.”

Sam will work towards his graduation, which is scheduled to take place in March 2016 alongside the Chef Academy’s other four apprentices.