They are part of a small army of caterers cooking around 39,000 healthy school meals each day, but it was their sugar craft skills that helped two Hampshire County Council apprentices to success.
Jade Duncan, aged 19, of Stockbridge and Charlotte Illsley, aged 17, of Fair Oak competed for the title of Bake-Off Apprentice Champion at Eastleigh College, where they train once a week.
With a ready-made cake and a box of tools, they had 40 minutes to demonstrate their creative skills on the theme of ‘apprentices’.
Jade (left) and Charlotte, pictured with team mate Matthew Thomas, wowed the judges with their creation, which was a tunic worn by Hampshire’s primary school caterers. Complete with a Hampshire County Council logo, the cake earned them second place.
“No one who entered the competition had any experience of doing sugar craft. Charlotte and I had never decorated a cake before!” said Jade.
“It was a very enjoyable and challenging activity, we had to work as a team and also stick to the time limit,” she added.
Leader of Hampshire County Council, Councillor Roy Perry said: “Seeing what these young apprentices achieved when they had never done anything like this before gives us every reason to be proud of them. It demonstrates the very high level of skills and opportunities that can be gained through an apprenticeship, and I wish them both every success for the future.”
The catering assistants are among 85 apprentices working within the County Council’s expanding Corporate Apprenticeship Scheme. The scheme aims to attract more young people into the workforce and provide them with the very best opportunities to develop their careers, and contribute to the Hampshire economy and the work of the County Council. Apprentices are working in roles such as mechanics, rangers or teaching assistants, in the countryside, in museums, or in laboratories.
Young people can register their interest in an apprenticeship, work experience or a traineeship (Internship Plus) with Hampshire County Council, by joining the Youth Talent Bank. For more information contact HYIP@hants.gov.uk