Vale kitchen assistant wins silver and bronze awards in national catering competition


Monday 24 July


A Vale of Glamorgan Council kitchen assistant showed off his award –winning culinary skills at a recent national competition.

Gareth Bronze Award Apple Pie

Gareth Humphreys, who works at St Cyres Comprehensive School in Penarth, took part in the 2017 Finishing Touches competition with the National Lead Association for Catering in Education, earlier this month.



On Thursday 6 July, Gareth won the silver award for his biscuit entry as well as best in class. His modern take on an apple pie, complete with a custard filling and popping candy on the top, won the bronze prize. 



It was only last October that he won at the regional Welsh Lead Association for Catering in Education competition (LACA) for his biscuit entry.



Gareth Humphreys, 64, who has worked as a kitchen assistant for two years, said: “It was a very good day but I didn’t know what the standard would be at a national competition.


"It would be great to encourage other members of staff in others schools, who enjoy baking, to take part in competitions like these. Having the backing of the catering team was fantastic.


“I spent most weekends baking in the lead up to the competition and people don’t realise how much of your time it takes. My 11-year-old grandson suggested putting popping candy on the pie, and I’m glad I did.”


Gareth also received a trophy and a mug from the catering team, who were more than happy to offer their support.


Gareth and the team

Mary Hesford, who works with Strategy, Community Learning and Resources at The Vale of Glamorgan Council, said:


“As a member of LACA, we asked kitchen staff if they wanted to take part in the Welsh Regional Competition last October 2016 we had two candidates interested and of these Gareth was successful in gaining a Gold award, following this Gareth was interested in entering the National LACA Competition, I was more than happy to support him and offer advice.



“We are very proud of Gareth’s success and have put a newsletter to all our sites for staff to hopefully be encouraged to enter any future competitions and also to share in his success.



“We had tasting sessions in the school and staff and pupils enjoyed this and were very willing to give their compliments and suggestions. "Gareth loves to bake and he has a real feel for it.”


For more information on the LACA competition, visit