The William Heptinstall Award
We greatly regret the cancellation of the 2020 Award. Please register your interest for the 2021 Award.

Over the last few weeks the Trustee has been carefully monitoring the HM Government messages about Covid-19. We recognise our duty and wish to take all measures to minimise the risk to our Candidates and Trustee Directors, while also doing our part in endeavouring to ensure good health in the community at large. We considered changing the format, or postponing the date of the interviews from 27 May but, with heavy heart, took the decision to cancel the 2020 Award.

We expect to offer the 2021 Award in the normal manner, and have recognised the commitment and effort of those who applied in 2020.

What is the Award?

The William Heptinstall Award is made each year to enable a young person to widen his or her culinary experience whilst travelling outside the UK. Following a most generous donation from the family of F John Avery MW, in memory of his unwavering commitment to the Award and to wine appreciation and knowledge, the Trustee Directors were pleased to increase the value of the Award to £4,000 from 2018. 

The Award is designed to allow the recipient fully to experience the cuisine of the area to be visited, while undertaking an overseas stage or stages that had already been contemplated, with this increase granted to allow a specific focus on wine. 

Who is eligible to apply?

Young persons who are establishing a career in the catering industry and are normally resident in the United Kingdom are encouraged to apply.  Only previous winners are not eligible to re-apply.

Preference will be given to applicants between 20 and 26, but applications from candidates outside this age range may also be considered.

How is the winner selected?

Applicants should complete and return the Application Form, together with a short piece on how they would spend the award money if they won.  As explained on the Form, a brief reference from their employer or tutor is also required.

Candidates will be short-listed on the basis of their Application Form and the other material submitted.

The Trustee Directors will invite short-listed candidates for interview in London on a date usually during May - this will not involve a test of practical skills. Following the interviews these candidates will be guests of the Directors for lunch at a top London restaurant.

How may Restaurant and Catering College Management help?

Restaurant Management, Heads of Catering Colleges and Culinary Schools are encouraged to support their young chefs in applying for this Award.  They may do this by completing their section of the Application Form, and by allowing time off to attend the interview.  The list of Previous Winners clearly shows the high standards of the sponsoring establishments and the positive influence of this Award on chef employment prospects

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Gary K 2002 with Marcus P

Paul Weaver 2011 San Sebastian in November

Paul Foster 2006 The French Laundry