Sheffield College wins place in UK young restaurant team of the year final


Talented Sheffield College students have won a place in the grand final of a high profile catering and hospitality competition.

Tom Lake, 18, Louise Downs, 19, and Matthew Steeper, 17, will compete in the UK Young Restaurant Team of the Year this summer after winning the northern heats. They had to make and serve a three-course meal inspired by an Italian theme at the northern heats, held at Leeds City College, last month. Squid linguine, roast crown of chicken and lemon polenta cake were some of the dishes they created in addition to serving a Prosecco and lemon aperitif.

Student Louise Downs said: “We are so happy to have won the northern heats, after working really hard to prepare for them, and are really looking forward to the finals.”

Len Unwin and Maxene Gray mentored the students. Len Unwin, Catering Lecturer, said: “I am so proud of our students. They put a lot of time into preparing for this competition, which provides them with an inspirational learning experience and a great grounding for their future careers.”

Five colleges will compete in the grand final in July, which is organised by Skills for Chefs. The others taking part are Loughborough College, North Warwickshire and Hinckley College, Penrith College and Westminster Kingsway College. Chef Andrew Bennett MBE, Chair of Judges, added: “The Sheffield College maintained their consistency in reaching yet another final with good teamwork and attention to detail.”

He added: “With the format changing this year, due to the increased number of entries, the bar has been raised with all of the finalists who receive detailed feedback in order to increase the quality throughout this competition. We hope that The Sheffield College will apply their learning accordingly to what will be a grand final!”

The competition takes place during the national Skills for Chefs conference being hosted at The Sheffield College’s City campus on Granville Road on July 5th and 6th. The prize is a study trip to Modena in Italy and dinner at Osteria Francescana, ranked number one in the World`s Best Restaurant Awards 2016.

Skills for Chefs is an annual event for industry professionals which showcases the knowledge and expertise of leading chefs, including top Michelin starred talent. The event is organised by the University of Sheffield in partnership with The Sheffield College. Visit The northern heats of the UK Young Restaurant Team of the Year were held last month on April 26th.

To find out more about full-time courses starting in September 2017, visit or call 0114 2602600. For more information on the competition follow @SheffCol, @RestaurantYoung and @SkillsforChefs on Twitter.