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Gold Service Scholarship 2014 opens for entries

Gold Service Scholarship 2014 opens for entries

A prestigious competition open to young people working in restaurant service is back for a second year.

The Gold Service Scholarship, which crowned Gleneagles restaurant supervisor Rebecca Dibben the first national winner in February 2013, is accepting entries from 1 September 2013 to find the next rising star in front-of-house hospitality.

The 2014 scholarship competition is inviting 22-30 year olds working in the UK in any aspect of restaurant service, including hotels, high-street restaurants, fine-dining, contract catering, licensed hospitality and clubs, to nominate themselves by visiting by 30 September 2013.

Industry personalities and connoisseurs, including Silvano Giraldin, Director at Roux Restaurants; Fred Sirieix, General Manager of Galvin at Windows; Edward Griffiths, Deputy Master of the Household at Buckingham Palace; and the UK’s ‘Most Powerful Person in Hospitality’ Alastair Storey, are all backing the Scholarship in a bid to inspire more young people to take up a professional career in front-of-house hospitality. The winner of the competition will be given the rare opportunity to work side-by-side with a number of the star supporters, as well as take part in prestigious culinary events, tour French vineyards and serve in some of the world’s best restaurants over the course of a year.

Alastair Storey, Chairman of lead sponsor BaxterStorey, said: “The Gold Service Scholarship is all about opening young people’s eyes to the world of hospitality. It was set up to help showcase the great work being done in the industry, the experience and skills it can provide and the fantastic career opportunities it has to offer. I’d encourage anyone in restaurant service to enter, from waiters and waitresses at high-street chains to front-of-house maître d’s in fine dining establishments, and see for themselves the endless possibilities available in this profession.” 

Rebecca Dibben, this year’s winner, added: “Winning the Scholarship has opened up so many opportunities for me and I’m so grateful to have been given the chance to work with the likes of Michel and Alain Roux at such prestigious events and venues, including Le Gavroche and The Waterside Inn.

“Becoming a chef is aspirational and restaurants are often known for the great food on offer, but what I’d like to see is people visiting restaurants because of the great service they receive from highly skilled front-of-house professionals. I urge anyone in the service industry to enter the competition to be in for a chance of winning this once in a lifetime experience.”

The competition is made up of four parts; an initial online test comprising multiple-choice questions and simple photo analysis; regional heats on 22 and 27 November where shortlisted competitors will be asked to perform basic service tasks and a question and answer session with the judges; a one-day master class for finalists and the National Final at The Connaught, Mayfair on 3 February 2014, where contestants will demonstrate their skills to the judges and invited guests at a special lunch. The winner will be announced at a high-profile awards ceremony on 10 February 2014 at Claridge’s.  

For further information about The Gold Service Scholarship and full details on how to enter, visit

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