Kenilworth apprentice Conor thanks Cowshed mentors for his training placement

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A county restaurant has been thanked for coming to the aid of a Kenilworth cookery apprentice giving him the opportunity to finish his qualification.

When a Conor Barron, a Cookery Apprentice at Stratford-upon-Avon College, found his training in jeopardy, The Cowshed Eaterie and Tea Rooms in Henley-in-Arden saved the day by offering him a last-minute apprenticeship placement.

The 22-year-old from Kenilworth, was six months into his Advanced Apprenticeship in Professional Cookery when his job was made redundant at a catering firm.

College staff from the Work Based Learning Team quickly organised an interview at The Cowshed enabling Conor to to continue his training, starting work at the restaurant the next day.

Conor said: “I had an informal interview with the owner of The Cowshed – more of a chat than anything and then had a trial shift on what was one of the busiest days we’ve had since I started here; it was a real baptism of fire but I really enjoyed it.”

Restaurant manager Julia Jones said: “We asked him to do a trial shift and it was clear that he fully understood the workings of a professional kitchen.”

Julia added: “He picked up our menu very quickly.

“When you tell something to Conor, he remembers it.

“Within days he was working with us as a team member who could have been with us for months.

“So many young people go straight to university without even thinking about the option of trying an apprenticeship scheme.

“And so many businesses don’t fully understand exactly how the apprenticeship scheme works and how beneficial it could be for them and their business.”

Conor is now a valued member of staff and already has input into the specials they serve coming up with new ideas for the menu.

For details of the College’s courses, please visit