The City of Liverpool College launches new Chef Academy

Living Ventures in conjunction with The City of Liverpool College is introducing its Chef Academy, an employer-led apprenticeship for young people in Liverpool.

Living Ventures currently operates GUSTO, Olive, and The Alchemist in the city.

The apprenticeship has been developed to address the skills shortage within the hospitality sector and provide a career path for young people from Liverpool and the wider Merseyside region. Working together with the college, Living Ventures are able to offer young people the opportunity they need to develop their careers and gain a recognised qualification within a real working environment.

The programme will consist of an initial “Kitchen Survival Skills” element to equip apprentices with the knowledge, skills and attitude needed to work as part of a busy kitchen team.

Candidates who are successful in gaining a place at the Academy will receive on-the-job experience within Living Ventures kitchens whilst having the chance to attend The City of Liverpool College one day per week to fulfil the qualification element of the apprenticeship, which is expected to last around 12 – 18 months. The apprenticeship is being offered to candidates aged 16 to 24.

The apprentices will also gain insight from chefs within the Living Ventures team and will receive motivational talks from others within the industry along with specialised training in different areas of hospitality.

John Branagan, Chef Director for Living Ventures said:

“The academy is a result of our desire to help tackle the national chef shortage and provide viable careers for the young people of Liverpool. The City of Liverpool College is a great fit for us as it is committed to helping employers provide real solutions to the skills shortage.”

Elaine Bowker, Principal and Chief Executive of The City of Liverpool College, said:

“Like Living Ventures we are dedicated both to helping young people develop the skills they need to secure meaningful employment and to supporting growth in the regional hospitality sector by developing a well-equipped, locally-based talent pool for the restaurant industry.

“We are proud to be working alongside Living Ventures, one of the UK’s strongest restaurant brands; a leader in training and development in the hospitality industry and a major employer in the North West.”

Living Ventures and The City of Liverpool College are holding a recruitment day for the Chef Academy on Thursday 20th October at Red Door, Berry Street, Liverpool. Those interested in developing their culinary skills are invited to complete an application via The City of Liverpool College on

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