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Cookery Holidays in Worcestershire

There is an art to being a great Chalet Cook. We will show you how to master it, enabling you to get the most out of both your job and life in the mountains. With many seasons of experience in the chalet industry and working alongside ski companies we have designed a course to train the perfect chalet host. Have fun and enjoy your gap year holiday with Orchards Cookery. Learn something new and treasure an experience of a lifetime.


  • 10 cookery classes
  • Learn how to cook and plan 5-course meals
  • Orchards cookery book and chalet guide book
  • Writing CV and interview training assistance
  • Tea, coffee, 4-5 course meals, wines
  • Daily breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • 12 nights accommodation
  • Chalet cook's goodie bag


10 days with instruction in English
Spoken languages: English
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The Orchards is a beautiful Georgian style family farm house with large gardens that has been in the Bomford family for five generations. Students staying at the school live in three adjoining cottages and are able to enjoy all the home comforts and family atmosphere during their stay.

As guests, students have the freedom of their own sitting room, The Swallows Nest which has a forty-two inch plasma television, a dvd player with a great selection of dvds, a computer with internet access (there is Wi-Fi broadband internet access on site for students with their own laptops or wireless devices) and a games cupboard.

There is also a selection of Pilates dvds and mats for students who do not fancy the early morning run! For the musicians among our students there is an upright piano in one of the cottages, as well as classical and folk guitars. Students are welcome to enjoy the large garden and all it has to offer.

There is a grass badminton court, volleyball court, space for a game of rounders, an outdoor table tennis table, an indoor table football for rainy days and a rather bumpy croquet lawn. There are also lots of quiet spots for simply soaking up the sunshine or catching up with a good book.

Garden enthusiasts will enjoy the interesting and unusual plants and trees as the garden was professionally landscaped in the 1960s, when there was a team of gardeners to look after the grounds! A few modifications have been made since then but the gardens are still beautiful, especially in the Spring. There is also a hard tennis court in the village for students to use.


Chalet cooks course

Designed specifically for ski season Chalet Cooks, the course will boost your confidence, develop your culinary skills and knowledge of cooking and give you the ability and inspiration to create your own masterpieces in the kitchen.

We will show you short cuts and pass on valuable tips of the trade, teach you how to handle disasters and equip you to cope with the unexpected problems you may come across while cooking at altitude. Our courses are intensive but great fun, with dinner parties in the evenings enabling students to get the most out of their time at The Orchards.

In addition to the cookery course, during break times students have the opportunity to receive personal help and advice with CV writing and have interview training. Students would also be able to attend ski company presentations and interviews and take the Level 2 Award in Food Safety in Catering.

Students can also tour the kitchen garden to see how some of the fruits, vegetables and herbs used in the cookery school are grown and harvested; learn quick ways to deal with a brace of pheasants. Students can burn a few calories by playing volley ball, football, croquet, badminton etc. We recommend the two week course to Gap Year students wishing to do a ski season.

Chalet Cook's course book and goodie bag

Orchards Cookery Book, folder containing a three week, five course menu plan, including vegetarian options and childrens meals, with time plans for cooking at altitude, conversion tables, napkin folding, Chalet Guide Book containing food translations for shopping in a foreign language (French and German), catering for special diets and food allergies, tips and guidelines to follow when running a chalet, Chalet Cook's goodie bag containing all sorts of equipment and help with recruitment (CV writing, interview training, ski company presentations and interviews at the school).

Course features

Three week, five course menu plans, including vegetarian options and childrens meals with detailed recipes and time plans for cooking at altitude. The Orchards Cookery Book supplied contains hundreds of additional quick, easy and impressive recipes, so that students can work at the top end of the industry, but still have time to enjoy life in the mountains.

A detailed Chalet Guide which contains all the information you will need to know about running a chalet eg: a typical chalet host routine; cleaning and changeover day checklists; living in the Alps; what to take out with you; what to expect at the start and end of the ski season; how to cater for special diets and food allergies (coeliac, diabetes etc); food translations for shopping in a foreign languages (French and German) etc.

An Orchards Chalet Cook's goodie bag to take with you, containing all sorts of essential pieces of equipment.

Help and advice with CV writing, interview training, ski company presentations and interviews at the school.

The opportunity to take the Level 2 Award in Food Safety in Catering (an optional extra on a two week course, details below).

Henrys Avalanche Talk. Henry is well known and experienced Mountain Safety expert in Val dIsere and he has prepared a bespoke training video for Orchards students to introduce them to the real risks of skiing off piste and the dangers of avalanches.

A wine tasting evening (an optional extra available on most courses).


The Orchards is a Georgian style family farm house situated on a farm in the heart of England, in Shakespeare country, eight miles west of Stratford-upon-Avon. The school is in a perfect location for beautiful country walks and for enjoying local attractions such as the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford, Warwick Castle, Cheltenham Spa, the Cotswolds, various Natural Trust properties, Ragley Hall and Sudeley Castle are among the favourites.



  • Tennis court


  • Garden
  • Multilingual staff
  • Special menu request


  • Free! WiFi / Computer
  • Wireless internet

How to get there

Driving directions from A46

At the roundabout where the B439 from Stratford-upon-Avon joins the A46, take the road sign-posted to Salford Priors.

After a quarter of a mile you pass a church on the left (set back from the road so easily missed) and take the next turn right into School Road.

Follow the road for a further quarter of a mile and turn left into our drive by a tall, crooked pine tree, signed to Angus Soft Fruits (If you see a telephone box on the right you have passed the entrance to our drive).

There is a security gate half way up the drive. If it is closed please call us from the gate so that we can let you in - if the phone is not answered please do not leave a message on the answer phone but try again in a few minutes.

After the fourth sleeping policeman there is a large barn on the right, bear left off the concerete and you will come to the back of the house.

Arrival by airplane

The nearest airport is Birmingham International.

Arrival by train

The nearest station is Evesham (just under two hours from London Paddington on the Hereford line, direct via Oxford).

Stratford-upon-Avon and Redditch stations may be more convenient but are a little further away.

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