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Merton College’s catering students explored the kitchens of the Royal Albert Hall that have whipped up meals for famous actors, musicians and royalty during a behind-the-scenes tour of London most prestigious entertainment – finding out how the kitchens work and even visiting the Queen’s private rooms.

Young chefs received expert advice as our Taste Restaurant hosted an industry event attended by top chefs and food industry professionals. Organised by the Chefs’ Forum, an organisation that brings together top chefs and catering colleges to support the next generation of young chefs, and held at the Merton College, guests were invited for a day of cookery demonstrations, chocolate tasting, a butchery masterclass and expert-led forage at nearby Morden Park.

Budding chefs and front of house professionals from Merton College have an exclusive opportunity to design, cook and serve a menu at the prestigious Investec Derby Festival held at the Epsom Downs Racecourse. 

A violin repair tutor from Merton College has been lending his talents to a music school in Uganda, training none other than Charles Dickens. Keith Graves swapped the Merton College swapped for two weeks at the Kampala Music School teaching student Charles how to repair violins and helping maintaining work on their violins, cellos and basses. Having a famous namesake isn't the only reason people are talking about Charles – thanks to Keith, he is now the only trained string repairer in East Africa.

Hospitality and Catering students from Merton College produced a stunning four course meal under the supervision of acclaimed chef Bruno Loubet to raise almost £1000 for charity. The students withstood the heat in the kitchen to cater for 64 lucky residents and employers from the local area who were invited to the student-run Taste restaurant at Merton College. The event was organised to raise money for Action Against Hunger, fund new equipment for the students and to give them vital experience of working at a large-scale catering event.

An aspiring chef from Merton College cooked up a three course storm to be crowned the winner of the district final of the Rotary Club's Junior Chef Challenge. Held at our £5.7m Hospitality and Catering Academy which opened in September, the competition saw 17-year-old Mark Shields beat 11 other entrants to the top spot.