All-new bistro inside the Devonshire Dome

Buxton & Leek College has recently opened its own bistro, Harpurs, which is proving a big hit with diners looking for a fine-dinin g experience at a budget price. For all foodies in the High Peak and Staffordshire Moorlands, the Bistro is designed to showcase the highest standards of modern dining.

Located at the Buxton campus within the historical Devonshire Dome, the Bistro is reconnecting culinary students to the College’s illustrious past as High Peak Catering College. Much like its predecessor, Harpurs Bistro is already well on its way to becoming a training ground for the head chefs of tomorrow.

Gary Hammond, Lecturer in Hospitality, and a BLC staff member for over 22 years, was also a student at the former High Peak Catering College between 1976 and 1978, and after completing his studies he went straight into industry. Gary says: 

“Students progress from here [BLC] into top industry careers and the Bistro enhances their learning by offering the full experience of catering and hospitality. Harpurs will enrich the students’ portfolios and qualifications with real-world learning. Moving forward it will be exciting to start entering more hospitality competitions, as our students are more than capable, and they deserve that recognition.”

The bistro is student-led, so from booking to service, BLC students deliver the highest standards in Hospitality and Catering for your dining experience. Harpurs Bistro provides opportunities for full-time students and apprentices to practice in an exceptional hospitality setting, learning from tutors with outstanding skills and experience.  BLC has already welcomed the first of their student chefs through the doors and will be soon announcing the launch of their new (technical) T Level catering qualification.

Their food is freshly prepared daily, using top-quality, fresh ingredients cooked and presented to bistro dining standards and then delivered under exemplary hospitality service and supervision.

Providing an invaluable training environment that helps to develop ‘real world’ skills for the head-chefs of the future, Buxton & Leek College and Harpurs Bistro pride themselves on making your dining experience one to remember.

Harpurs is giving students and apprentices the opportunity to develop and grow their skills. Lily and Alex, two of BLC’s Level 2 Commis Chef Apprentices, were excited to put their learning into practice providing high quality front of house and customer service, whilst honing their barista skills. Despite being nervous at the opening, the pair have taken the experience in their stride, and alongside the College’s other apprentice chefs, have since been delivering wonderful afternoons of outstanding service.

During term-time, Harpurs is open on the first Tuesday of every month, and every Thursday, with spaces available at 12:00pm, 12:30pm and 1:00pm. You can experience exceptional dining and a three-course meal for just £19.95, but tables are booking up fast, so head to blc.ac.uk/bistro/ to find out more!

Adult learning opportunities

Learners of all ages and abilities are encouraged to visit the campuses to find out more about the range of programmes and apprenticeships BLC has on offer. The college’s online courses are currently FREE of charge (subject to availability).

The adult course provision at the College has recently had a massive boost with more courses than ever and a brand-new  programme guide available to pick up at events throughout the year – or you can email enquiries@blc.ac.uk to request a copy.

Buxton & Leek College has two exciting Open Events approaching.

For those interested in taking the time to tour facilities and take part in activities led by subject teachers and students, Saturday 20th April from 10:00am- 1:00pm is the perfect time to visit the Leek and Buxton campuses. Take the family and view the College’s simulated hospital ward and seven industry kitchens at the Buxton campus, or the state-of-the-art workshops and facilities, including Salon Inspire, a fully equipped hair & beauty salon at the Leek campus.

Alternatively, if you’d prefer a quick chat with tutors and staff about programmes and finance options then Thursday 16th May between 5:00pm and 7:30pm could be the perfect opportunity, particularly if calling in after work or school fits better with your schedule.

You can register for any BLC Open Event at blc.ac.uk/our-events/

I think it’s ok to use fine-dining as looking at the food that’s what it is. I think the main issue is calling it a fine-dining restaurant, rather than bistro.


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