Dave Read, Level 2 Bakery and Patisserie course manager with students

New bakery and patisserie course manager joins the food department

Dave Read, Level 2 Bakery and Patisserie course manager with students

Dave Read, Level 2 Diploma in Bakery and Patisserie course manager with his students

Dave Read – Level 2 Diploma Bakery and Patisserie lecturer and course manager

Originally from Basingstoke, Hampshire, Dave began his career in the food food industry 38 years ago after completing two years at college. He then moved to London and worked in a variety of hotels, restaurants and corporate hospitality establishments.

After 4 years in London, Dave’s next move was back to Basingstoke to run a restaurant. Alongside the restaurant business he also lectured part-time in catering and hotel management at Basingstoke College.

Keen to continue to broaden his industry experience, when Dave spotted an job advert in The Caterer for a  New Product Development chef position at Ginsters in Cornwall, he was determined to take on the challenge. The interview progress was a challenging three stages and Dave excelled at all three, successfully securing the position. As a New Product Development chef, Dave spent 5 years developing new savoury pastry products for Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury’s and Tesco. This role proved varied and had lots of travel opportunities including delivering product and sales presentations to the respective supermarkets.

Remaining with Ginsters for a further few years, Dave moved into the main manufacturing site helping to develop and implement product quality systems for the manufacturing process.

Dave proceeded to set up Samworth Academy Centre in Cornwall. The centre delivers staff development programmes, including craft skills. After 11 years with Samworth, Dave was approached by Proper Cornish Ltd with a request to set up their New Product Development and training department. Proper Cornish, as the name suggests are a traditional hand made pasty producer – they hand crimp over 50,000 pasties per day! Dave mentioned, “during this time I don’t think there are many flavours or ingredients I did not put into a pasty!”

Dave continued to build on his New Product Development experience at Crantock Bakery and finally at Tamar Foods before taking up his new position at Reaseheath College.

With extensive industry experience, Dave is thrilled at the opportunity to work at Reaseheath commenting, “I hope my experience in the food industry can help inspire students to reach their potential as the next generation of bakers and patisserie experts”.

Thanks to Dave Read, our new Level 2 Bakery and Patisserie course manager for sharing his career story so far!


Reaseheath Food Centre

Food department asks students to ‘Be Wise’

Reaseheath Food CentreThis year the food department is piloting a behavioural health and safety programme for students, ‘Be Wise’.  The Be Wise programme has been set up to help students reduce the risk of injury and harm to themselves and others whilst in the workplace.  The programme will be working with students to champion health and safety across the department and help students to identify good behaviour and, more importantly, how to challenge poor behaviour in a positive and constructive manner.

A very important element to the Be Wise programme is the appointment of Student Champions, who will act as both role models and the link between students and staff in control of health and safety proceedings in the food department. We are hoping  to have a Student Champion for each food curriculum area, to share their experience and best practice as they engage with the programme.

The well-being of all those who learn, work, or just simply visit Reaseheath College is important to us all. So much so that we treat health and safety as a ‘core value’. With over 88% of all accidents in the workplace believed to be related to ‘Unsafe Acts’, we believe there needs to be a strong focus on health and safety best practice in the workplace. We hope the Be Wise programme will enable students to share health and safety best practice across the food department and beyond!

For more information on the Be Wise programme, please contact Kevin Campbell: kevin.campbell@reaseeheath.ac.uk

Kevin Campbell

Processing Halls Manager 


Food department to launch FdSc in Bakery and Patisserie for September 2015

bakery The food department are immensely pleased that 23% of our Further Education students progressed on to Higher Education this year.

In order to create even more opportunities for students to progress from Level 3 to degree level courses in the food department, we are currently working in partnership with University of Chester to develop and validate a new course, FdSc in Bakery and Patisserie Technology. The course will include artisan bread making, baked goods processing, cereal and flour technology, chocolate and sugar technology. We are hoping this course will be available for September 2015 entry.

This course will be in addition to our current degree level offer including, FdSc and BSc (Hons) in Food Manufacturing with Business Management and FdSc Dairy Technology.

You can find out more about food related degrees at Reaseheath on our website or by contacting Kathy Merrett, Programme Leader for Food on: 01270 613233 or kathym@reaseheath.ac.uk.


university of Chester

Reaseheath Food Centre

Eden Study Tour Appleby Creamery - cropped

Eden students on tour

Eden Study Tour Appleby Creamery - cropped Our new cohort of 19 dairy technology students from Arla Foods, Müller-Wiseman Dairies, Dairy Crest and Glanbia Cheese started their ‘Eden‘ journey last week with a trip around the dairies of Yorkshire and Cumbria.

Students had the opportunity to get a feel for the variety of products and processes that they will be experiencing as part of their course.

First stop was Arla in Leeds, to see their extensive liquid milk processing site. Next stop was Wensleydale Creamery in Hawes, North Yorkshire, to see the wonderful array of cheeses made at this small scale creamery. Students were treated to a fantastic array of samples including Wensleydale cheese with Mango and Ginger, Blue Wensleydale and their extra mature Wensleydale Kit Calvert. After a rather rainy night in Kendal it was on to an artisan cheese producer, Appleby Creamery, where they saw how to make some fantastic sheep’s milk cheese.

The study tour ended at Dairy Crest, Kirkby. Students were given an insight into the large-scale production processes of Clover spread and were shown around by new Eden graduate and Reaseheath alumnus Steve Woods.

The work has just begun for this cohort – we wish them all the best of luck!

Kathy Merrett

Food Programme Leader

Georgie Brighton

Catching up with trainee dairy technologist – Georgie Brighton

Georgie BrightonGeorgie achieved a distinction in her Level 3 Diploma in Food Technology from Reaseheath after joining us back in 2009. She then progressed onto a foundation degree in food industry with management. During her degree, Georgie successfully managed her time and spent the summer months working as a Section Manager in the Customer Service and Replenishment department at Waitrose.

Growing up on a dairy farm, Georgie took a particular interest in the dairy industry whilst studying at Reaseheath. With the dairy industry in mind, on the successful completion of her foundation degree she decided to apply for a job at Arla Foods. Following a competitive selection process involving a telephone interview and two site based interviews, Georgie won a position as a trainee dairy technologist at Arla. Arla along with other leading dairy companies work in collaboration with Reaseheath College to deliver a specialist dairy technology training programme, Project Eden.

As a trainee dairy technologist at Arla, Georgie is now enrolled onto Project Eden and is working towards a FdSc in Dairy Technology – to help her gain the technological skills to progress within the dairy industry.  She will spend the majority of her time at Arla’s Westbury site, where she will gain vital work experience in each section of the factory and broaden her knowledge of the manufacturing process of butter and whey powder. During the three year programme, Georgie will spend 7-9 week blocks at Reaseheath twice a year to complete the theory, practicals and assessment for the qualification. Each trainee dairy technologist is also assigned a mentor to support them throughout the programme.

Georgie commented, “It’s a delight to have the opportunity work in an industry I love and continue to study at the same time. I’m excited for the future and really pleased to be chosen as the class representative at Reaseheath for the dairy technology cohort.”

To find out more about Project Eden and our dairy technology training programme, please visit our website.alraRGB-Web-logo-2

Laura Broome Alra secondment

My secondment at Arla Foods, Leeds

Laura Broome Alra secondment

On the 7th July 2014 I started my 7 week journey working at one of the world’s leading dairy facilities. I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to work at Arla to gain industry experience in all the different aspects of the organisation.

Before I started my secondment,  someone said this statement to me, “be a sponge Laura, just soak up all the information’” – and I can honestly say that is truly what I did.

My first week consisted of an induction programme covering all of these areas listed below:

Milk Intake

Milk Process and Production

Cream Process and Production

Cottage Cheese


Quality and Laboratory

Supply Chain


Environment, Health and Safety


The remaining 6 weeks of my secondment was split by spending 2 weeks working in milk process, 2 weeks in cream process and 2 weeks in the cottage cheese. At these times I worked closely with the technicians based in each of the areas. I gained an insight to the day-to-day processes from start to finish, establishing how products are made to meet customer needs. At times I operated the machines via the control rooms and other times I was out in the factory doing manual work e.g. mixing in powders to make flavoured milk or testing the cottage cheese pH levels.  I learnt about new technologies which included systems like Tetra Plantmaster, Master Production and Alfast. I also became familiar with SAP (systems, applications and products).

As well as working in the dairy I also had the opportunity to see other aspects of the food supply chain. I went to collect raw milk from farms for an afternoon, which was very interesting for me to see where the process of production starts. Also, I saw the other side of the process by delivering milk to supermarkets from 4am in the morning! This was very worthwhile for me.

alraArla supply all main stream supermarkets such as Asda, Tesco, and Morrisons. To be given to opportunity to work for a company making products seen on supermarkets shelves was very rewarding for me.

I have to be very thankful to Reaseheath and to Arla for making my secondment an amazing experience and one I will not forget.

Laura Broome

Apples - Seasonal Food in October

Seasonal Foods in October

Apples - Seasonal Food in October

October is one of the best times to find wild mushrooms.  We have an amazing range of species, however you need to be very careful to avoid poisonous varieties.  Guided foraging courses are available across the country and are well worth attending.  If in doubt always ask an expert.

There’s a wide variety of dishes that can be made with mushrooms, garlic mushrooms, mushroom omelette, mushroom pâté, mushroom risotto, mushroom soup and mushroom stroganoff  name just a few.


It’s also a good time of year for game, as pheasant and partridge are now season.

At this time of year we are lucky to have a fantastic range of apples.  You’d expect Chester Pearmain or Chester Pippin apples to have their origins in Cheshire, and even Mere de Menage, when it’s called by its other name – Lord Combermere. But Lord Clyde and Lord Derby also have their roots in Cheshire (sorry about the awful pun) when we’re talking about apple varieties and not aristocracy.

Reaseheath Apple Festival


At Reaseheath we hold an Apple Festival every year, and most of our visitors are amazed by how many different varieties we have on display.  This year it’s on the 11th and 12th October. You can out more information at: www.reaseheath.ac.uk/apple-festival.

Apple pie is a family favourite for many, but why not try something a little different…?  Have you tried a Cheshire fidget pie (made with bacon and apples) or a Cheshire cheese and apple pie? Why not give them a go and let us know what you think!

Get your teeth into a “Bloody Ploughman” this October and remember an apple a day keeps the doctor away!

Bloody Ploughman Apple


For some more October inspired recipes and information,  take a look at BBC Good Food, VegBox and the Eat the Seasons October update.

Bill Pearson