Author Archives: TimN

MasterChef Winner Tim Anderson Masterclasses

Tim Anderson

Tim Anderson, this year’s winner of BBC TV’s MasterChef programme, will conduct two Masterclasses at the new Tideswell School of Food on Saturday August 20th.

Tim wowed the judges of MasterChef with his weird and wonderful culinary creations to deservedly become the youngest ever winner of the hit BBCOne series. Tim is taking time out of his busy schedule to offer two unique “hands on” cookery sessions for a strictly limited number of guests in Tideswell School of Food’s new teaching kitchen in the Peak District.

During the sessions he will demonstrate and teach a two course meal using his experimental approach to cookery creating unique dishes that guests will be able to take home. At the end of each session Tim will leave time for 30 minutes of questions and answers.

Kim Wathall, Tideswell School of Food’s Marketing Executive, said “It’s a great coup for us to get Tim to visit us and an honour to host him here. We’ve only been open for 6 months as a Cookery School and it’s important to grow our reputation and develop our business so that we can support the local food economy. Together with the forthcoming TV coverage of the whole Taste Tideswell project in BBC One’s “Village SOS” series, we will certainly be putting Tideswell on the culinary map.”

Places on the Masterclasses (and many other courses) are available via Tideswell School of Food’s website:

Taste Tideswell’s Education Programme

Taste Tideswell is a local food project with an Educational purpose. Tideswell School of Food caters for all levels and ages, and as a “not for profit” social enterprise, the leisure courses and corporate days it runs support the work of an Education Officer, local teacher Michelle Lindley.

Michelle said; “The educational aspect of Taste Tideswell is multi- faceted. The main aims are to encourage children to grow more of the food they eat (which also involves them being aware of issues such as deforestation, food miles and climate,) and to become able and enthusiastic cooks (learning life skills and sustainability as they will hopefully use the produce they grow!)”

The work of the school’s Education activities are focussed on Key Stage 2&3, and can take place in Tideswell School of Food’s own kitchen or nearby Nursery garden, or Michelle regularly travels to teach in local schools.

She continues; “Many schools already have a vegetable garden but many also admit that this resource is under used as staff aren’t sure what to grow , when to grow it or indeed what to do with the end product. Here at Taste Tideswell we provide expertise to help people maximise their food production as well as getting the children involved using curriculum based activities from learning about such things as soil type and capillary action to making bio-degradable plant pots from newspaper.”

“Most schools also have a cookery club which runs at least some of the school year but this is invariably after school which makes both staffing and funding a problem. We can provide a trained teacher who can come into school to run cookery activities making it inclusive to all. As all our schools have different needs these activities can be tailored to suit whatever is being studied, for example African cookery- and as all the planning, ingredients and equipment are provided this can be an invaluable resource.”

Which came first, the chicken, the egg, or the cupcake?


When someone asks you if you will make 2,300 cup cakes most of us would probably say and emphatic “No!” However, Michelle Lindley, who works as Education Officer at Taste Tideswell isn’t so meek.

“If I’d realised quite how much work was involved, I probably would have declined” she confesses, “but when I did a trial run it all seemed to work swimmingly! We made the cakes over a few days, working in the teaching kitchen here at the Tideswell School of Food.  We certainly needed a lot of space – 2,300 cup cakes take up a lot of room – whether it’s just the ingredients or the finished article. Then we had to crack on with decorating and packing them. One thing that made it much easier, is that we had all the right equipment, and icing that many cakes certainly required it!

We also had a fantastic team of supporters and helpers – from Derby Diocese and the local primary school. It was all in aid of celebrating 200 years of church schools, and it was the idea of Alison Brown, the Deputy Director and Schools’ Adviser from the Diocese to offer each child who participated their own birthday cake. It was such a great idea, though the words “never again!” were heard from time to time! But when you heard all the children from various primary schools singing songs they’d learned specially, it was really heart-warming and seeing their pleasure in receiving the cakes really did make it all worth while.”

It also introduced us to a great local project called Highfields Happy Hens in Etwall (they donated the eggs for the cakes) – have a look at this link and read their story. Their work is very impressive.”

Lottery Chief Brews a Tideswell Tipple

Peter Wanless and Mick McGrath in the Nano Brewery

Big Lottery Fund chief executive Peter Wanless learnt the ingredients of brewing success during a visit to the Taste Tideswell project.

Peter and Mick McGrath, head of the Big Lottery Fund’s East Midlands region, took part in a course taught by master brewer Zane Barnes when they visited the new Tideswell School of Food.

Peter visited to see the progress that has been made since the £400k lottery funding was awarded a year ago and to hear Taste Tideswell’s plans for a sustainable local food economy.

In addition to using the nano-brewery he also inspected other facilities in the school of food, including a commercial kitchen available for hire to local businesses, and met locals in the village pub.

“I’ve been really pleased to see the establishment of so many new and promising projects that are working to satisfy the social needs of the village, whilst dealing with the financial demands of start-up businesses,” he said.

“It has been fantastic over the past year to watch the Village SOS projects progress from concept to reality. Taste Tideswell was one of the first businesses to launch and having seen it for myself, I can understand why it has attracted so much praise.”

Peter’s visit follows the project’s successful Tideswell Festival of Food, which attracted around 2,000 visitors from across the region.

“We were very gratified to receive so much interest and support from members of the public through what was a very busy day,” said village champion Tim Nicol.

“Coming on top of that, Peter’s very postive feedback is further confirmation that we’re on the right track – and just reward for a lot of hard work by Tideswell folk.”

The Nano Brewery is ready

It’s taken a while to get organised but we’ve now completed the assembly of the Nano-Brewery at Tideswell School of Food. Thanks to loads of help from Zane Barnes from Nottingham University School of Brewing Science, and some welding and cutting from local fabricators Elliott and Wragg, we have a working 9gal brewery. We will use this to run half day courses for visitors in groups of 3-5 who want to spend half a day putting the kit together and making a proper brew from malt, hops, yeast and water. We won’t sell the beer, just the courses- the beer is just a welcome by-product that will get sent on when its fermented. Another test brew planned tomorrow-courses can be booked at . Local brewing enthusiasts please get in touch and we’ll get a community brewing initiative going. Any brewers that want to help with running courses? We’d be happy to hear from you!

Here’s the branding

There’s more to this than meets the eye, but we like the simple, sturdy statement the “Tideswell T” makes.  It’s our emblem and symbol for the whole project, and works really well on packs as Tideswell Made, and on the School as Tideswell School of Food. Like the bite?

The Taste Tideswell branding

The Taste Tideswell branding

Almost there

We’re almost ready to open the Tideswell School of Food- on time, on budget, and looking great. The Builders, Graham Stuart and Co have done a great job and all our suppliers have turned up trumps. We’ll be inviting the whole village to look around and take part in all sorts of cooking activities from 6th December. Full leisure courses start in January. Website will be up by 6th Dec . Lots still to do- stocking and equipping, branding and decorating, but everyone’s pulling together and it’ll be all right on the night.

Also had our first Marketing Masterclass this week with a visit from 2 experts from kent University using Tesco/Dunhumby data to show “who buys my food”. We’ve got 3 key members of staff joining us over the next 2-3 weeks, with 2 more to come soon.  They cant come soon enough!

I’ve had some really rewarding experiences recently, from encouraging co-operation from all the retailers, to baking bread and making Pork Pies  at Tindalls the Bakers, and even milking the cows at Peak District Dairy.

I’d like to assure everyone that no animals or champions were harmed in the making of this programme.

More Great PR Coverage for Taste Tideswell

Really nice article in Derbyshire Life Magazine this month on Taste Tideswell.

Take a look- it’s a great introduction to what we are about. Read all about it!!!  (PDF here) Derbyshire Life Nov 2010

So Tim, how’s it going?

I’ve lost count of the times that I’ve been asked that question, on and off camera. It’s great to have the support and interest of so many villagers in Tideswell, and indeed friends in my “home” village of Easton on the Hill and beyond. I know lots of my professional colleagues and clients are taking an active interest too, so I hope the recent furious “blogging in bullet points” below gives some idea of the work that’s going on, and this gives you a feel for the job I’m doing.

It’s busy- that’s an understatement. It’s not only the volume of work that has to be done , but the diversity of it. I’m not complaining, and I’m certainly not the only busy body around. I’m amazed how so many committed villagers on the “core team” are managing to hold down a day job while putting in many hours of discussion and delivering on the project.

Personally I constantly bounce between tasks that are in my comfort zone and those that aren’t.

The briefing and selection of an agency (“Peter and Paul”- seen here visiting for a briefing) and working with them to develop the clear thinking behind the brand and the great designs they have produced in double quick time is familiar ground, but it’s what I’m primarily expected to deliver, so the pressure to get it right is pretty obvious.  This week we had a massive turning point on the branding, when we presented to the Marketing Group and the Board, and we came away with the right decision on a really striking but simple logo. I confess to going into “sales mode” in the meeting and when we got the right result, I further confess to celebrating a little too hard at the George afterwards.

It’s the experience of things outside my norm of Corporate Marketing Consultancy and NPD that make this job even more rewarding though. I can walk out of my cottage front door on the High St to buy a loaf from Tindalls, some mince from Gibbs the Butchers, some apples from Peaches, or maybe a saddo’s ready meal from the Co-Op.  Some days that can take a couple of hours! Talking to people in the real life setting of their own retail businesses, with real customers there deciding on whether or not to part with real hard earned cash- that’s real marketing.  I hope that the principles of marketing can be applied to Tideswell and show how real marketing can benefit communities as well as companies.

Even further away from my comfort zone I’ve been on cookery courses, helped to select granite worktops and kitchen equipment, (although Juliet Waugh has made the important decisions), puzzled over architects drawings, looked for brewing expertise and equipment, choosen phone systems and computers (almost), begged for help from suppliers, friends, and business contacts (thanks to all!) written job descriptions and advertisements, discussed many new business ideas, and pushed newsletters through several doors.  All of this gets punctuated by the arrival of our good friends from the BBC,  Jane and Mandy, (or Hinge and Bracket as they are better known) and the opportunity to try and say the simplest things correctly on camera. I do ramble on, and there’s going to be quite a bit of me on the cutting room floor before we’re done. Why do I always think of the clever phrase just after they’ve left?

Hope that paints a picture for you- watch this space for developments!

Job Vacancies- Advertisement in local press

Taste Tideswell Ltd and The Tideswell School of Food

The Tideswell School of Food is a new Cookery School, Community Kitchen, and Education Venue in Tideswell, in the Peak District. It is a social enterprise at the heart of a wider project to boost the local food economy and encourage participation in the local food chain.

The project is part of Village SOS- an initiative by Big Lottery Fund and the BBC to inspire a UK rural revival.

We require  the following staff to help set up and run the School of Food, which is due to open in early December.

Operations Manager. (Full time) Responsible for the day to day management of the School of Food and its resources in support of all project streams. One direct report, and working with cookery and tuition staff. Candidates will be top administrators with experience in catering, events, hospitality, or 3rd sector management.

Head Of School (Part time) Responsible for the development of cookery course portfolio, teaching content and delivery of core community courses. Will identify and manage  visiting cooks/chefs.  Some overtime will be available. Three part time reports and working with administration and education staff. Candidates will be well qualified chefs with experience of teaching and demonstration.

Marketing and Administration Assistant (Full time). Responsible for general office administration, website updates and marketing activity implementation. Candidates will be marketing literate with excellent administation and customer management skills.

Education Officer (Part time); Responsible for managing all education partnerships, developing broader education content, aimed primarily at children at KS2&3 and sharing experience with other groups. Candidates will have a teaching background and experience of developing innovative teaching materials.

Kitchen Staff (part time): 2 Kitchen Assistants and one Cleaner/porter are required. Whilst some training will be given, evidence of experience in similar roles will be an advantage,

Job holders will need to have a flexible approach to working hours and be able to travel to Tideswell.

In all cases please apply to with a full C.V. and covering note setting out your suitability for the chosen role, your current salary and benefits package, and your salary expectations.

Postal applications: Taste Tideswell Ltd, The Courtyard, Commercial Road, Tideswell, SK17 8NY

Salary and benefits offered will be fair and reasonable in line with experience.

Taste Tideswell believes in providing equal opportunities to all applicants.

Closing date for applications: October 25th 2010

No agencies.