Educating Foodies for Life at Bromsgrove
28th January 2015

After over 450 years of being a successful but relatively small School, Bromsgrove has, in the last few years become one of Britain’s largest and finest independent Schools with 1600 day and boarding pupils aged 2 to 18. That growth in pupil numbers has been wedded to a build programme of titanic scope which encompasses teaching areas, boarding houses and the focus is now on providing extended and enhanced dining facilities which will open fully in the Summer. 

At Bromsgrove School the aim is to more than educate the youngsters in our care to the highest level they can achieve, it is also to develop in those young people a sense of how to make the world a better place and to strive to achieve this aim in their future lives.  So, at Bromsgrove we aim to educate for life and this includes how to eat well and to understand the important role that food, its preparation and enjoyment in sharing can contribute to a happy and healthy life. 

Bromsgrove caters for a huge variety of nationalities (47 at the last count) and pastoral care, including the provision of balanced meals with plenty of choice, is high on the list of priorities and with this in mind we have just appointed Holroyd Howe as our catering partner.

Holroyd Howe is an award-winning catering company that specialises solely in the independent school sector and holds an impressive and growing portfolio of clients including Shrewsbury School, St Pauls School in Barnes and Pangbourne College. In addition to Bromsgrove they have also recently been awarded contracts at Oswestry School in Shropshire and Seaford College in West Sussex.

Holroyd Howe aim to educate the pupils at Bromsgrove about the importance of healthy choices by engaging them in the provenance of the food supplied to Bromsgrove – all fresh produce is locally sourced – and by creating interest in the food on offer.  Virtually all of the food is cooked from scratch, using fresh ingredients and local suppliers. Pupils are helped to learn how to get a good balance in their diet which includes fruit, vegetables, protein, fibre and starchy foods whilst avoiding too much fat, sugar and salt.  They aim to improve the knowledge and awareness of healthy eating and thereby empower the young people in our care with the ability to make informed choices about their food.  Holroyd Howe can demonstrate that by creating this interest in the food on offer, pupils and staff naturally lean towards the healthy options on the menu.  Pupils with special dietary needs such as dairy/lactose intolerance, gluten-free diets and halal food are catered for and are given workshops on how to understand how the foods they can eat can be combined to meet all their nutritional needs. 




The theme of education for life is supported by Holroyd Howe who will give regular cookery demonstrations to pupils and help Sixth Form boarders to learn how to prepare simple recipes in preparation for life at University.  Meanwhile, at the Pre-Preparatory School the youngest pupils begin to learn about the importance of their food by watching demonstrations by the chefs and having the opportunity to have a go at food preparation themselves.  Pupils are excited about this additional dimension this will bring to their overall knowledge and appreciation of food and understanding the of benefits eating well for their future lives.  Holroyd Howe actively seek feedback from pupils on these session so that they can further develop the sessions to enhance the pupils’ knowledge based on their interests. 

Following discussions with pupils a menu has been devised that is both extensive and healthy.  With young people variety is key and with the help of student advisors there are many theme nights and special events planned to help provide the boarding pupils as much choice and variety as possible and to lend a home from home feeling to the boarders’ eating experience at Bromsgrove.  Themes being planned for the current Lent term include: The Bromsgrove Banger – where pupils help choose a bespoke school sausage from a local butcher, healthy eating weeks, Pancake Day, Burns Night, Chinese New Year, pasta and sushi demonstrations and international speciality dishes, with Spanish tapas being a favourite!

Holroyd Howe founder, Nick Howe, commented. “We hope to build on the effervescent dining room culture at Bromsgrove which is akin to the very strong House system of the School, a key strength of the pastoral provision at Bromsgrove.”

Headmaster of Bromsgrove School, Peter Clague comments, “We are delighted at the way in which Holroyd Howe have so readily understood the School’s culture.  They are producing meals which mirror the School’s reputation for flair and innovation.  Equally exciting is their willingness not just to serve our students, but to educate them as well.”

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