The search has begun to find Chesterfield’s Food and Drink Apprentice of the Year in the 2019 Chesterfield Food and Drink Awards.

Sponsored by Apprentice Town (Led by Chesterfield Borough Council), the award was introduced last year to recognise the significant contribution young people are making to the town’s thriving food and drink sector.

Awards organiser Destination Chesterfield is urging businesses to now publicly recognise the hard work and dedication of their apprentices by nominating them for the prestigious award. Nominations must be made by midnight on Wednesday 5 June.

Last year the title was won by Corey Elliot, an apprentice at The Lilypad Café and Restaurant, who plans to one day have his own restaurant.

As well as putting forward their apprentices, businesses can also nominate themselves for the Apprentice Employer of the Year award which is sponsored by Learning Unlimited (The Chesterfield College Group). Last year the award was won by Stephenson’s Tea & Coffee House.

Peter Swallow, Chair of Destination Chesterfield added: “Chesterfield’s hospitality sector is growing steadily bringing jobs as well as new tastes and experiences to the town. It’s an exciting time for the sector. This award recognises the importance of apprenticeships in the sector to ensure the town has the skilled workforce to meet the demands of investors.

“A new Premier Inn recently opened in the former Co-op on Elder Way creating 60 new jobs and more jobs and opportunities in the sector will be coming on board at Elder Way, Chesterfield Waterside and Peak Resort. These developments all need ambitious young people who are keen to build a career, not only in hospitality but also in Chesterfield.”.

Neil Johnson, Assistant Director for Economic Growth at Chesterfield Borough Council, which leads the ground-breaking Apprentice Town initiative commented: “Apprentice Town is committed to raising the participation of young people in apprenticeships in Chesterfield.

“The Award category sponsorship is an important part of the initiative’s drive to raise awareness of the many apprenticeships within the food and drink sector. Equally important, is recognising and celebrating the achievement of the young people who are currently undertaking their apprenticeship, and this award does just that.”

Other supporters of the awards include Banner Jones Solicitors, BHP Accountants, Casa Hotel, Chesterfield Borough Council, Derbyshire Times, East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire. Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire), Edge Events Management Ltd, Elder Way (Jomast Developments), FEAST – Food and Drink Forum, Hoods Florist, Jumble Creative Design, Kier Group, Learning Unlimited (The Chesterfield College Group), Magnifica, MSE Hiller, Owen Taylor & Sons, Peak FM, Reflections Magazine (Bannister Publications Ltd) and Shorts Chartered Accountants.

To nominate an apprentice, or put your business forward for an award, please visit