RAF Reserves Host Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall’s Selection Day


The Royal Air Force’s newest Reservist Sqn – 505 (Wessex) based at RAF St Mawgan, in Cornwall, recently hosted an exciting ‘boot camp’ event for 22 hopeful trainee chefs.

A series of well- planned military activities were part of a selection day process for 16- 24 year olds who were hoping to join the Fifteen Cornwall Apprentice Chef programme at Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Restaurant at Watergate Bay. Run by the charity, the Cornwall Food Foundation, in partnership with Cornwall College, successful applicants are offered the opportunity to gain their NVQ Level 2 apprenticeship whilst completing on the job training with professional chefs at Fifteen Cornwall over a 15 month programme.

During this time, the successful trainee chefs will gain work experience in top restaurants around the country and take part in sourcing trips to fantastic suppliers. The Foundation looks to recruit those who are not in employment, education or training and in need of a second chance. All profits from the restaurant are put straight back into the charity to run the Apprentice Programme, the Schools Programme and it’s outreach community cooking programme ‘Food Works’. 

505 Sqn Personnel have supported this event for the past three years, putting the candidates through their paces with a with a number of military leadership challenges from putting up a tent, and changing a Land rover wheel to completing a number of command tasks, all designed to test teamwork, discipline, leadership skills and the ability to follow instruction. The final activity was situated in a ‘field kitchen’, where applicants were challenged with a ‘taste test’ identifying various delicious ingredients, before showcasing their omelette making skills!

505 Sqn recruit in a number of part- time roles within the Chef and Catering specialisms, and offer personnel a very different opportunity to further develop their culinary skills supporting RAF operations in the UK and overseas as well as getting paid to participate in adventurous training and sporting activities.

The Commanding Officer, Squadron Leader Mann said “This is a great opportunity for us to support an excellent Charity, with many similarities between our establishments, commitment and a ‘can do’ attitude being an essential element of successful candidates.”

505 Sqn are currently recruiting, so if you have a spirit of adventure and are interested in learning more about the varied part time Reservist roles available, please contact 505Sqn-Join@mod.uk


Reserve Forces