Former boy band star turned award-winning farmer JB Gill donned a butcher’s apron on his visit to The School of Artisan Food to discover how to prepare venison from the Welbeck Estate and transform it into delicious products.
As well as joining the Venison in a Day course, he was given a tour of the Welbeck Estate to find out more about its approach to farming, including the deer park, game larder and a visit to the resident rare breed pigs.
There was also time to meet some of Estate’s artisan producers including the Welbeck Abbey Brewery before paying a visit to the award-winning Welbeck Farm Shop and The Harley Cafe for a slice of cake.
JB said: “The venison in a day course at The School of Artisan Food is a crash course in the delights of artisan food preparation. Giving insight to the whole process of food production is really important to me and the course has cemented and extended my knowledge no end.”
Julie Byrne, managing director, The School of Artisan Food, said: “We’re delighted to welcome JB to The School of Artisan Food. We share so many values and beliefs such as the importance of advocating the use of sustainable, quality, British meat and the need to educate children about where their food comes from.
“JB is a brilliant ambassador for ethical food, so it’s been great to show him the sort of work we do as a charitable enterprise to help create the next generation of bakers, butchers, cheesemakers and artisan business start ups who will continue to fly the flag for using quality British produce. And of course, he can go away having learnt how to prepare his very own venison – a great example of a local, seasonal and delicious meat.”
Four years ago, JB swapped careers to set up a farm in the Kent countryside, where he lives with his wife, Chloe and three-year-old son, Ace. Their smallholding successfully produces award winning, KellyBronze turkeys and free-range Tamworth pork. He is passionate about supporting the British farming industry and has previously urged people to buy British food.
JB rose to fame as a member of one of the UK’s biggest boybands – JLS. They dominated the charts for five years, boasting 5 number 1 singles, over 10 million record sales worldwide and a multitude of awards.
Now an established member of the farming community, JB has used his success within the entertainment industry to highlight his passion to educate children about the origins of their food and he is the lead presenter on CBeebies’ BAFTA-nominated television series, ‘Down On The Farm’. JB’s enthusiasm for farming life and knowledge of countryside issues has seen him regularly contribute to BBC’s ‘Countryfile’ and ‘Springwatch’.
JB also works closely with The Prince’s Countryside Fund, which seeks to celebrate and promote the value of family farms, rural affairs and the countryside to our British society.
For more information, visit www.schoolofartisanfood.org