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AA College Restaurant of the Year

Launched in 2016 in partnership between People 1st and AA Hotel Services, the AA College Restaurant of the Year award recognises the hard work of chef lecturers and student brigades that run college restaurants.

Part of the AA’s annual Hospitality Awards, the award gives colleges an unprecedented opportunity to be part of one of the industry’s most prestigious events and put their restaurants well and truly on the map!

This award is only open to People 1st accredited colleges that have also been awarded an AA College Rosette.

If you are not accredited and would like the opportunity to enter, you have until 31 March 2018 to complete the process and have your college restaurant inspected in order to be eligible for this year’s award. Find out more here.

2018 entries now open - deadline 30 April 2018

All People 1st-accredited colleges with a current AA College Rosette are now invited to enter the 2018 award, which will be presented at the annual AA Hospitality Awards in London on 24 September.

Successful applicants will be invited to send two learners and a lecturer to a ‘judging day’ at a prestigious London hotel in June where they will have the opportunity to ‘sell their college restaurant’ to the judges as well as experience life behind the scenes of a busy London hotel.  

Following this, the judges will identify a shortlist of three college restaurants for the award.

How to enter

Please review and complete the application form and application task entry and video below, and return them to the email addresses included in each document by 30 April 2018.

What previous winners say:

“Winning the AA College Restaurant of the Year award has been the icing on the cake to the benefits that being a People 1st accredited college has delivered - not to mention the positive publicity it has given us.

"Our reputation in the Cheshire community continues to grow and attract talented chefs who can now train at the best college restaurant in the country.” - Jasbir Dehsi, Principal, South Cheshire College (2017 winner)

“The whole awards process was a brilliant experience for our students and staff – from the judging day, which included a talk from a five AA Rosette-awarded, Michelin-starred chef, to the awards evening itself and the fantastic publicity we’ve received on the back of our win.

"It’s been a source of immense pride for us all and has really helped to demonstrate how our hospitality department offers an excellent career option to school leavers. I definitely encourage other colleges to enter!” - Jennifer Cruickshanks, Head of Hospitality, Tourism and Foundations Skills, Runshaw College (2016 winner)


AA College Restaurant of the Year 2017

The 2017 award process included an interactive judging day with Michelin-starred chef Tom Kerridge and was scooped by Academy Restaurant at South Cheshire College.

Find out more

AA College Restaurant of the Year 2016

The inaugural AA College Restaurant of the Year award offered a host of fantastic benefits to shortlisted entrants - from an exclusive judging day in central London to real-life work experience at a five-star venue.

Find out more

Four ways hospitality accreditation can take your college to the next level

Jennifer Cruickshanks, head of hospitality at this year's AA College Restaurant of the Year award winner, Runshaw College, explains how accreditation has benefitted her department.

Read the blog