Belfast's James St Restaurant Group Launches Apprenticeship Programme In Partnership With Belfast Met

By Dave Simpson
Belfast's James St Restaurant Group Launches Apprenticeship Programme In Partnership With Belfast Met

Northern Ireland chef and entrepreneur Niall McKenna is seeking young people with a taste for fine food and culinary expertise to join an apprenticeship programme for 2022.


McKenna has been the driver behind Belfast's restaurants James St and Hadskis, and his James St Group is also behind Northern Ireland cookery school Waterman House, which opened in 2021.

The new apprenticeship programme, announced during National Apprenticeship Week, provides on-the-job training, experience and mentoring combined with professional learning in partnership with Belfast Met, providing an opportunity to kick-start a career as a chef or in a front-of-house role.

Statement By McKenna

McKenna stated, "Now is the busiest time for the hospitality industry which is bouncing back and confident in its future and there is strong demand and many great opportunities for young men and women who want a fast-track career backed with the best training and qualifications available.


"For those with ambition, a great attitude, creativity and a good sense of humour, we promise best-in-class mentorship, experience and learning in an exciting and friendly environment that delivers a recipe for personal and professional success.

"I'm really proud of the talent we've helped to foster over the years as part of our programme including our own Aaron McNeice - now head chef at Hadskis and up and coming trainer at our vibrant cookery school at Waterman House."

Statement By McNiece

McNeice stated, "This year's programme promises a real menu of success that mixes top notch real-life training, dedicated mentorship and cutting-edge theory that will help to craft an outstanding career in the industry. With a big love of food and a thriving hospitality environment, I've never looked back. I'm delighted to be helping to lead this year's new recruits and excited by what this opportunity will bring for a new generation of local young men and women."

Start Date And Registration

The James St Apprenticeship Programme, which includes training to NVQ Level 2 at Belfast Met, will start in September. Those between the ages of 16 and 24 who want to participate in the programme can register on, by e-mailing [email protected] or by phoning 028 9560 0701.

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