Three Years Specialised Chef Scholarship

Aspiring Student Chefs

All Aspiring Student Chef categories stand the chance to win the prestigious three year Advanced Apprenticeship (subject to age group), offering an opportunity to train in all aspects of professional cookery at the highest level. The Scholarship is arranged by the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts (RAOCA) and is managed by The Bournemouth & Poole College.

The point of difference between an RAOCA Apprenticeship and a routine apprenticeship is the standard of employer and establishment with whom the apprentice is employed during his or her training. These are mostly, but not entirely, in London and include Claridge's, The Ritz, The Dorchester and Chewton Glen.

The scholarship leads to a standard National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) at a minimum Level 3 and Key Skills of Level 2. In addition, at the end of the three year apprenticeship the candidate sits the RAOCA final exam. If the candidate is successful he or she will be awarded a Royal Academy of Culinary Arts Diploma and become a Graduate of the RACA.

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“Simply the most advanced professional Chef School this country has to offer”

Adam Byatt is a graduate of the Specialised Chefs Scholarship and is a Fellow of The Royal Academy of Culinary Arts. He trained at Claridge's and The Square. He is now the Chef Patron of Trinity Restaurant in London, which has been listed in The Times Top 100 Restaurants in the UK. Adam has published his own book and is a regular guest on BBC TV’s Saturday Kitchen Live.


“Enrolling on the Royal Academy Specialised Chefs course at The Bournemouth & Poole College was a huge turning point in my life. The excitement of learning and the feeling of achievement suddenly made sense for the first time. Whilst at The College you are taught by people who know and work closely with the industry; they are among the best in their field. If you put the work in, you will leave equipped to thrive inside quality establishments. The attention to detail and level of training is unparalleled at The College.


Add this to a culture of professional learning that runs through the campus, and even someone like me, with an incredible low tolerance for academia, can thrive!

I left The Bournemouth & Poole College with a new found confidence, bursting with knowledge and ready for full time employment in some of London’s most highly regarded restaurants and hotels. I always wanted to own a restaurant and be in control of my future. The depth of classical cookery learnt during my apprenticeship not only gave me the confidence to pursue my dream but also armed me with the skills I needed to make it a success.  


I have built a life I am proud of. Aside from my personal successes, what inspires me the most is taking apprentices from The Bournemouth & Poole College and playing a small part in the development of their future. My kitchen now has four Specialised Chefs, all trained in simply the most advanced professional Chef School this country has to offer.”

Meal & Overnight Stay At An Award-Winning Pub

Keen Home Cooks

The Olive Branch pub is situated in the pretty village of Clipsham, just two miles off the A1 in the tiny county of Rutland. The pub was originally three farm-labourers' cottages that were knocked together to make a pub in 1890. It had been the heart of the village community up until its closure in 1997.

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With the help of friends, family and villagers, Sean Hope, Ben Jones and Marcus Welford bought The Olive Branch in 1999 and spent six weeks scrubbing, cleaning, decorating and renovating to bring it back to its former glory as a traditional village pub. They added luxury accommodation in 2003 to create this wonderful village inn, with open fires, antique tables and chairs, mixed with pine kitchen tables and benches. The atmosphere is friendly and informal with chestnuts roasted on the fires in winter and homemade lemonade in the garden in summer.


- Pub of the Year 2008
- Red Guide since 2002

Good Pub Guide
- Pub of the Year 2021 & 2014
- 6th Best Pub in the UK 2013
- Inn of the Year 2008
- Leicestershire & Rutland Dining Pub of the Year 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021

Good Hotel Guide
- Editor's Choice Award 2017, 2018, 2019
- Restaurant-with-Rooms Award 2012
- Entry every year since 2007

Explore the Olive Branch more:

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Foodie & Cooking Goodies

Keen Home Cooks

A luxury foodie hamper.

All finalists

Cookware and bakeware.

Aspiring Student Chefs

Cash prizes.