The Apple Tree, the re-branded restaurant at Grantham College, was officially opened on Friday night by the prinicipal of its twin college in Poland.
Guests, including parents, local business people and loyal customers, were invited to the special event, to celebrate the culmination of two years’ planning.
The new facilities will allow the 66 full- and part-time students on the hospitality course to experience the reality of working in a restaurant, while giving the public the chance to dine out while supporting their studies.
Dozens of diners were able to sample the menu, cooked and served by students.
Among the special guests invited to dine out for free that evening were representatives from the Olde Barn Hotel at Marston, which takes on Polish work experience students for five weeks every eight months.
Nick Grimwood, from the college, gave a speech during the evening, during which he praised the partnership with, among others, the hotel. He said of the work placement programme: “This, in turn, has allowed us to strengthen our position of understanding with our friends in Bielsko Biala which, in turn, allows our students the opportunity to broaden their understanding by visiting that city.”
Mr Grimwood enlightened those gathered on the various trips taken by the students, aimed at broadening their horizons and seeing how much further a career in hospitality can take them. He talked about a day at Ascot Racecourse, followed by a trip to London’s Smithfield meat market, and also visits by Level 2 students to Brussels Christmas Market and Level 3 students to Valencia in Spain.
Mr Grimwood said: “All this might seem a little bit of a ‘jolly’ to some of you, but I can assure you that is most certainly not the case.
“Each and every one of these trips goes to broaden the minds and experiences of those involved, to be given the opportunity to travel away from your home environment and see how others live and operate is of tremendous usefulness to those proposing to enter into the hospitality industry.”
The restaurant is open for lunch on Mondays, Tuesdays ,Thursdays and Fridays. Grill nights are on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and ‘Fine Dining’ on Wednesdays.