Southern Regional College launches new £600k Newry restaurant and kitchen

Pictured launching the new restaurant and kitchen are: SRC chief executive, Brian Doran; broadcaster and ‘mentalist’, David Meade; Alex Green; and Barry Smyth

SOUTHERN Regional College has launched a new £600,000 training restaurant and kitchen in Newry to help inspire new career in the food and hospitality sectors.

'The Graduate' training restaurant and kitchen has been designed to meet the critical training needs of a new generation of leaders in food preparation, production, safety and customer service.

The new culinary facility will be key to underpinning the College's chief role in delivering local and regional success in its support of the food, hospitality and tourism sectors.

Brian Doran, chief executive of Southern Regional College said the new restaurant and kitchen iss part of a wider programme designed to enhance its expertise in the sector and underpin its prowess in hospitality and culinary arts.

“Our hospitality, tourism, agri-food and food production sectors are critically important for the wider economy and for providing exciting job opportunities and career progression. Southern Regional College is steadfastly committed to ensuring that the skills, knowledge and experience are always immediately available to ensure that this can continue," Mr Doran said.

"This important investment reflects our vision to further expand our enviable links and collaboration with businesses who themselves also remain committed to quality, growth and recognition for the hard work that they do.”

Michele Shirlow, the chief executive officer at Food NI added:

“The aim to draw more visitors and boost employment opportunities can only be built on the provision of good skills and training – which is why investment in the sector is crucial. I'm delighted that Southern Regional College continues to support our local and regional food and hospitality industry with such commitment and I congratulate all the hardworking staff, students and businesses involved.”

Head chefs Barry Smyth and Alex Green, who both lead Michelin-starred local restaurants were on hand to launch the new restaurant.

Mr Smyth is currently the managing partner for Yellow Door at Hillsborough Castle and also a former lecturer in Culinary Arts and Professional Cookery at Southern Regional College. Alex Greene is head Chef at Deanes Eipic, while he also previously worked at Claridge's and Petrus in London – two of Gordon Ramsey's flagship restaurants.

SRC Newry campus is the only Further Education college in Northern Ireland to offer a Foundation Degree in International Culinary Arts, which is the only qualification available to provide a career progression pathway for chef lecturers in Culinary Arts.

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