Free training to help school chefs whiz up delicious and nutritious menus for their pupils is now on offer across Somerset. 


Any school in Wells and Somerset can apply for free support which is tailor made for school kitchen teams and starts on October 3rd.


It covers everything from basic kitchen skills to masterclasses in nutrition, reducing food waste, coping with rising food prices and meeting the school food standards.


The training is free of charge thanks to the big-hearted food producer Charlie Bigham’s, who’s joined forces with school food charity, Chefs in Schools, to ensure local kitchen teams feel valued and supported. 


The benefits will also be felt by pupils and schools. Research is clear, improvements in school food mean increased pupil wellbeing, health and attainment. 


The training will be delivered by Chefs in Schools, a charity backed by culinary stars such as Emily Scott, Prue Leith, Thomasina Miers and Yotam Ottolenghi.


Laura Mumford, Head of Training at Chefs in Schools, said: “We’re so incredibly grateful to Charlie Bigham’s for funding this training.


“Being a school chef is a tough job – but there are so many tools, tricks and tips that can really help to produce amazing food in a school. Our training programme results in happier pupils, satisfied staff and brings wide-ranging benefits to the school.”


There are thirty training places available. The course kicks off with an in-person skills masterclass on October 3rd at Charlie Bigham’s Food Production Campus, in the former quarry in Dulcote, near Wells. This is followed by eight virtual, half-hour sessions spread over a term. 

The course is suitable for all school kitchen staff and set ups – catered in house or outsourced. It’s designed to boost the confidence and skills of school kitchen teams and is a mix of online modules and in person workshops in the local area.


Any school in and around Wells can apply. Schools with more than 40% pupils eligible for free school meals will get priority.


Schools can apply here.


Charlie Bigham said, “We have been working with Chef’s in Schools for 3 years and are delighted to be supporting the training programme and the expansion of this incredible charity into the Wells area. At Charlie Bigham’s we know how important a good meal is. We’ve seen firsthand the impact that Chefs in Schools can have on the overall wellbeing of schools, their catering teams and the children themselves. We look forward to welcoming the trainees from the surrounding Wells area to our Quarry Kitchen in October.”


Schools have until 29th September to apply.


For more information, head to:





For media interviews, email:



Notes for editors


About Chefs in Schools


  • Chefs in Schools was established in June 2018 with the aim of transforming food, food culture and food education in schools through training, guidance and support.
  • The charity works hands-on in schools in London, the South West and Yorkshire – reaching tens of thousands of pupils each day, targeting areas with high levels of socio-economic deprivation, aiming to reduce food poverty, child obesity and malnutrition.
  • Chefs in Schools has shown it’s possible to make exciting, creative school meals for as little as 75p in primary schools and 90p in secondary schools.
  • Chefs in Schools was co-founded by Henry Dimbleby, co-author of the School Food Plan, author of the National Food Strategy and co-founder of Leon Restaurants, Nicole Pisani, former Head Chef at Nopi, and Louise Nichols, Executive Head Teacher of the Leap Federation of Schools.

●  Our charity is backed by some of the country’s leading food influencers, including Prue Leith, Thomasina Miers and Yotam Ottolenghi.