Cookery Theatre

Each year we bring you a variety of cookery demonstrations from some of the areas top chefs designed to get you cooking with hints, tips and secrets from the experts.


Our full programme will be available soon, but here are some of the top chefs that will be demonstrating their skills this year.

Lawrie Jeffries, Senior Sous Chef, The Jockey Club at Cheltenham Racecourse.

Lawrie & CameronLawrie has been a chef for 30 years. He has travelled all over the world and worked in Australia and New Zealand for some time. He spent some time teaching professional cookery at Gloucestershire college’s Forest of dean campus and now works as Senior Sous Chef at Cheltenham racecourse. He lives in the Forest where he and his wife have a large vegetable garden cultivating unusual vegetables. He keeps his own pigs for a hobby.

Dan Blewitt, Esse Engineering

6j7a1441Dan has worked for ESSE for over five years, demonstrating how easy it is to cook good food on ESSE Range Cookers. Cooking at food fairs, events and showrooms all over the Country including River Cottage HQ, Matt Tebutt and Tim Maddams ( formerly Head Chef at River Cottage).

“I love learning and hopefully mastering new dishes and cooking them in front of an audience with no room for error. The Forest Showcase is one of my favourite events with a great atmosphere, super food producers all around, and sharing a stage with top class chefs”.

Emma, MINIYAKI’S Japanese Soul Food, Symonds Yat, Herefordshire.

Miniyaki'sMy name is Emma…. Not very Japanesey I hear you say. But I lived in Osaka, Japan for 10 years and speak the language fluently. In that time I was very privileged to have experienced lots of different levels of Japanese lifestyle , culture and, of course, cuisine.

I didn’t live as a foreigner in Japan I lived as a local and therefore got treated like one. Having the great opportunity to work for an all Japanese Company made this easy! People would take me into their homes and show me their family recipes and show me the real Japan.

8b8cd9_a8eccbc09289449b996ae294c3f86e6e~mv2_d_3438_1612_s_214 years on Japan still heavily influences my life and I hope this reflects through my food.

Many people, when hearing I lived in Japan, would say ‘I don’t like raw fish’. So I started hosting ‘Japan Night’ Parties in my home here in the Wye Valley. Out of all the foods I made the Okonomiyaki & Yakisoba were the most popular. So MINIYAKI’S was born!

Debbie Jones from The Forest Deli

Local Cheese & cheese tasting

Rob Cox, Head Chef, The Tudor Farmhouse Hotel, Clearwell, Forest of Dean.

robert-cox“I’m passionate about local, seasonal produce and in my spare time I love nothing more than foraging for herbs and have a keen interest in game. It was Tudor Farmhouse’s commitment to ‘local and homegrown’ that first struck me; their 20-mile menu ethos is something I really want to develop.  I can’t wait to get my hands on the kitchen garden and plan to work closely with Jeanie our gardener and local forager Raoul Van Den Broucke to really maximise seasonality.”

sw chefRob is the winner of South West Chef of the Year 2017 (overall) and South West Professional Chef of the Year, Best Menu, and Best Dish.


Matthew Stead Lecture in hospitality, Gloscol


matt steadFormer student at Gloscol. I have worked in restaurants as a Sous chef with a 1-2 rosettes in Monmouthshire, Gloucestershire & Herefordshire. Head chef at a successful gastro pub, Sous chef at a hotel in the French Alps. Chef/lecturer teaching professional cookery and professional chef course from level 1 – 3.


Yvette Farrell, Principal, Harts Barn Cookery School, Longhope, Glos.

yvette.jpgYvette owns and runs the Forest of Dean’s premier, award winning Cookery School and has been featured on national TV, including playing host to ITV’s Britain’s Best Bakery .  The School was set up with the aim of making cooking accessible to all ages and abilities and it has now grown to offer catering services (Hire a Chef), Supper Clubs, parties and lots more. “A Taste of the Forest” is Yvette’s signature menu using only locally sourced ingredients.  She has achieved many accolades since starting the cookery school, including bringing squirrel (meat) and the Forest of Dean to the attention of the world’s media!

Andy Robertson, Chef/Tutor, Harts Barn Cookery School, Longhope, Glos.

Andy-Robertson-300x300As one of eleven children I had an early decision to make: either help with the washing up or the cooking. I chose cooking!

So from the age of eight I was helping​ Mum cook for more than ten at each meal. ​

​Professionally I trained as a bakery technologist in Gloucestershire. Having worked in a craft bakery I then moved on and became a bakery technologist for United Biscuits developing new cakes and breads for Mcvities, Tesco, Marks and Spencer and others. ​

From there I went into teaching, eventually becoming head of a bakery school and later head of catering at a college in Gloucestershire.

I having also been a publican and restaurateur and have gained a range of knowledge and skills in all parts of the food industry.

Now teaching at Harts Barn Cookery School, I believe that good baking and cooking comes from knowing your ingredients and how they work. Recipes are guides and should be used in conjunction with your knowledge of how ingredients vary from season to season.

I have three young children: 9-year-old twins and a 6 year old and all have a love of cooking and baking.


The Cookery Theatre is sponsored by  

Hales of Drybrook   Esse Stoves   Gloscol