Students at Nelson and Colne College’s School of Culinary Arts have had a chance to work alongside top local chefs as part of their studies.

East Lancashire is blessed with some of the region’s best restaurants and this thriving industry is reliant on a supply of talented young people who are keen to make a career in catering and hospitality. Nelson and Colne College Sixth Form has been training young chefs for more than 40 years and has an excellent reputation with local restaurants.

The Assheton Arms in Downham has been a favourite restaurant for Ribble Valley diners for many years. It is a well-loved seafood led restaurant with a focus on excellence and value, and outstanding modern cuisine! The College was therefore thrilled when executive chef Anthony Shirley agreed to visit the College’s own restaurant Farringtons to work alongside its young chefs for a special themed dining event. Anthony brought with him his own team from the Assheton, including Mark Taft and Lee Page, meaning the students were working alongside talented chefs who between them offered a wealth of experience.

For the event, the students worked with the Assheton Team to produce an exciting menu which was highly praised by diners. This consisted of a selection of starters including Ham Hock Hash with soft poached egg and mustard dressing or Scallop and Barbeque Duck Wontons with wild mushroom and lemongrass broth, main courses of Tikka Spiced Hake with split pea dahl, king prawn pakora’s and mint yoghurt or Persian Chicken with jewelled rice, pomegranates and coriander, toasted almonds and rose petal harissa. Diners finished with a selection of sumptuous desserts including Melting Double Chocolate Pudding with praline cream and marinated berries or Three Little Pavlovas – blueberry, praline and passion fruit.

The Catering students had a great time working with such experienced chefs and are eagerly awaiting the New Year when chef Mark Taft and The Seafood Pub Company will return to the College to present a pop-up restaurant in Farringtons for an entire week!

The pop up restaurant will be open for lunch each day from Monday 24th to Friday 28th February and dinner on Tuesday 25th to Friday 28th February. Diners are encouraged to book early as this is sure to be a popular event! To book a table or request a menu please call 01282 440334 or