George Rolstone is apprentice chef at Millbrook Village, Inspired Village’s community in Exeter. To celebrate National Apprenticeship Week 2022, George and Millbrook Village Head Chef Olivier Guyard-Mulkerrin share their thoughts and experience at the apprenticeship scheme at Inspired Villages.
What attracted you to doing an apprenticeship with Inspired Villages?
I really like to support this age group as I have a great relationship with my grandparents, so working in this sector was a natural step for me. Working with and learning from experienced chefs like Olivier [Guyard-Mulkerrin, Head Chef at Millbrook Village] and Gary [Lacey, Chef at Millbrook VIllage] was a huge attraction. Compared with the general hospitality sector, my working hours are great, ensuring I can have a really healthy work/life balance.
Describe your typical day
After the usual opening checks, I will look to see what I can create as ‘soup of the day’ and make suggestions for the daily specials. Gary and I are responsible for preparing the meals to be delivered to our residents’ homes. We then work though lunch service together with Olivier, where I will do a range of different tasks. Olivier and Gary will teach me new skills as the opportunities arise. We then clear down from service and spend a bit of time interacting with our residents as they will often come to tell us how much they enjoyed their lunch. On a Thursday we serve a themed menu, so Thursday afternoons are spent prepping for this dinner service.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
I really enjoy working with Olivier and Gary. I consider myself to be very lucky to be able to learn so many skills from them both, given their vast experience. I enjoy the creativity and helping to prepare the different menus for the busy Thursday evening service and then helping to cook the food in the evening. Thursday nights have a great atmosphere about them.
What are the benefits of having an apprentice?
It is great to be able to mold someone to your individual requirements and to train the future generation. Being able to pass on knowledge and skills so that they are not lost for future generations is very rewarding
What’s it been like having George as an apprentice?
Training George has been challenging but rewarding. Watching George grow and develop from the really shy person he was when he first started has been great to see. George has really come into his own and gained confidence and is a great asset to the team. He should feel proud of what he has achieved
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