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Top chef Niall McKenna in search for apprentices


Skills search: Niall McKenna

Skills search: Niall McKenna

Skills search: Niall McKenna

Northern Ireland chef Niall McKenna has begun a new search for apprentices and voiced concern about a skills gap.

The apprenticeship programme is open to 16-to-24-year-olds who'll be able to learn skills from the finest chefs in Northern Ireland.

Mr McKenna's Belfast restaurant group includes James Street South and its sister restaurant Bar + Grill, Hadskis and Cast & Crew.

He said the group was "extremely proud" of its support of apprentices as it launched its fourth annual programme. "It has been empowering to see so many of our former students continue to pursue careers in the local hospitality sector, with many still working across the group," he added. "There is a severe shortage in the number of skilled professionals in Northern Ireland to fill roles in the new hotels, restaurants and venues opening or planned across the city and province.

"Our Apprentice Scheme provides a solid investment in the future of world-class hospitality here and I would urge any aspiring chefs with a determination to succeed to apply before the September deadline."