A top Lake District restaurant is offering school and college leavers the chance to train in a Michelin-starred establishment.

The Cottage in the Wood, on the Whinlatter Pass near Keswick, won its first Michelin star in October, but was forced to close its doors in March.

Now it has reopened, owners Liam and Kath Berney say they have been moved by the plight of this year’s young people hit by lockdown and and then caught up in the controversy over A-level and GCSE results.

Both had long careers in education and training before buying the 17th century former coaching inn 18 years ago.

Liam said: “In recognition of all the talent that is leaving school or college this summer, whether your results have come out as hoped or not, we have decided to take on two new hospitality apprentices. The most important thing is that you are passionate about looking after people and aspire to a career in our fantastic industry. We will provide practical, hands-on training in all aspects of food and beverage, along with attendance at Kendal College, which is a centre of excellence.

"If you are looking to develop your knowledge and skills and get a great start in this fantastically creative and rewarding industry, we want to hear from you.”

Liam added that this could also be an opportunity for someone considering university, with a degree level apprenticeship or an MBA open to the right candidate.

He said they would also like to hear from people who have other experience and want to change career, or perhaps recent graduates who may have worked part-time in hospitality during their studies.

The apprenticeship could be in the kitchen, where chef director Ben Wilkinson gained his Michelin accolade, front of house in the restaurant with restaurant director Monika Zurawska, or in leadership and management.

“Training in a Michelin-star establishment is a real endorsement and looks good on a CV,” said Liam.

“This is a great opportunity to join a small, talented, friendly team, with a long history of valuing learning and helping young people develop.”

Richard Axford, head of the hospitality school at Kendal College, said: “This is an excellent opportunity to join a wonderful team and learn hospitality at a very high level, in partnership with the number one rated college in the country. We work with most of the county’s Michelin star restaurants and are delighted to be collaborating with The Cottage in the Wood.”

Two other restaurants in Cumbria received Michelin stars for the first time in October, taking the county's total to eight.