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As part of the Michael Caines Academy students take part in a six-week work experience placement in both years. – previous placements have included Gidleigh Park, The Ritz Hotel (London), The Goring Hotel, The Elephant, Le Champignon Sauvage (Cheltenham).

Examples of student placements

Lydia at the Ritz

Name: Lydia Uglow
Placement: Ritz, London

I worked in the afternoon tea section, as that was where I wanted to specialise in, and my first impression was wow!! Everywhere was so big and all the food looked so pretty and detailed.

Throughout my time I had the chance to help make various recipes and decorate the individual little cakes ready to be sent up to the palm court. One of my favorite jobs was helping to lay out all of the little yellow macaroons, and then to help delicately fill and sandwich them together. It gives you a real sense of the size and scale of food, which has to be produced everyday in order to keep on top of their customers needs.

It's always very busy and keeps you on your feet (which I like.) I have learnt so much and I will take a lot away with me from this experience. It’s not just about giving the customer a nice cake, it's about providing something which a lot of love and care has gone into making with every little detail perfect (for example shards of tempered chocolate with 'The Ritz' imprinted in gold on them) and most of all giving the customer something they will enjoy and remember for the rest of their lives! This standard is something I would love to aspire to be like in the future.

Ben at the Driftwood Hotel

Name: Ben Hurley
Location: Driftwood Hotel, Porthscatho

I gained an incredible amount of techniques, and organisation skills to get me ready for service and the day ahead.

It's a lot more full on than the college @34 kitchen because the standards are a little higher and there are less people so more 'pushing on' has to be done.

The one thing that has surprised me the most, is that everyone wants to be there, they all want to be there at 7 in the morning and leave at midnight, and I feel that that reflects in the food when it leaves the pass!

Fenella at Salutation

Name: Fenella Gilson
Location: Salutation Inn, Topsham

I have thoroughly enjoyed these past six weeks working along side Sylvain and I feel as if I have learned massive amounts of very valuable information both about the industry and patisserie.

Some of the things I have learned to make are macarons, bonbons, tarts of various flavours and an assortment of fine French patisseries.

Sylvain has been amazing to learn from as he has been very patient, but has pushed me when I needed it! Overall a fun six weeks with a great patissier!

Ciaeran at Ledbury

Name: Ciaeran Brennan
Location: Ledbury, London

At the Ledbury I learnt what it takes to work in a two star establishment, working under the best chef in the country right now.

My eyes have been open to the amount of attention to detail you need to work in the world of fine dining.

Brett's cooking is unique in a way that he understands that some food doesn't need to be messed with or made into something it's not. He celebrates the produce for what it is as well as adding technical elements, which all together create a perfect but complex balance!

Ellis at Whatley Manor

Name: Ellis Martin
Location: Whatley Manor, Wiltshire

In the time that I spent at Whatley Manor I felt what the pressure is like to work in a 2 Michelin Stared kitchen.

 I discovered how Important it is to have respect for the ingredients that you are using as well as the consistency and accuracy that is needed to hit a 2 michelin stared standard. Working with a team with such high standards was an amazing experience!