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Drinks Trust opens applications for vocational programme Develop

The Drinks Trust is pleased to announce that the applications to its new vocational programme, Develop, are now officially open to applicants. For the first time in its 135-year history, The Trust has introduced an initiative to alleviate long term hardship with a proactive funding and training programme that delivers opportunity and skills to those within and looking to enter our industry. The initiative will train and educate the next generation of the drinks and hospitality industry professionals.


As a result of the ambitious aims of this new initiative, Develop has received the generous support of leading industry businesses as partners to the programme. Campari Group UK will be the Official Spirits Partner of the scheme, and Moët Hennessy UK will support as Official Champagne Partner. Furthermore, operator groups have been recruited to deliver training and job opportunities to Develop graduates, with Gaucho and M Restaurants and Vagabond Wines amongst the first groups to support the initiative officially.


Ross Carter, CEO from The Drinks Trust, comments: “Since the announcement of the Develop initiative to the industry last year, The Drinks Trust has received funding and support from brands and operators who recognise the vital importance of the scheme for the welfare of the entire drinks hospitality industry and the many people living in hardship in the U.K. We are extremely grateful to Campari Group UK, Moët Hennessy UK, Vagabond Wines, M Restaurants and Gaucho for being the founding partners in our vocational initiative Develop and we are confident that together we can make Develop a core part of The Drinks Trust offering for many years to come.”

The Drinks Trust’s Develop initiative aims to help around 750 beneficiaries in its first year of operation, with a variety of training and development options ranging from self-guided CV writing and interview skills workshops, through to sector-specific CPD accredited training with top industry providers, including Wine & Spirit Education Trust, Institute of Brewing & Distilling, Mixology and European Bartender School, amongst others.


Ian Harris MBE, Chief Executive for the WSET, comments on the programme: “As an educational charity, WSET is dedicated to supporting the drinks industry through best-in-class qualifications. We believe that quality skills-based training has the power to enhance workplace confidence, improve job satisfaction, accelerate career development and make drinks and hospitality businesses stronger. Develop offers a fresh, industry-wide approach to upskilling the workforce of the future, and we are thrilled to be joining the initiative as an Educational Provider.”

Develop was conceived to provide a long-term solution to individuals facing hardship and an opportunity to develop a successful career in our industry, with the ambition of lifting thousands of people out of hardship indefinitely. Industry leaders and influential figures have supported the initiative as being fundamental to the growth of our industry. 


Brad Madigan, Managing Director for Campari Group UK, says: “It is so important to us at Campari Group UK to play a role in the development of our drinks and hospitality industry, and we hope this investment will not only benefit the industry as a whole – but in particular to operator businesses who continue to struggle with staffing and skills shortages. We are proud to be joining forces with The Drinks Trust yet again and play a role in this initiative – we very much look forward to welcoming the first graduates of the Develop scheme into our vibrant industry.”

Cerentha Chow, On-Trade Director for Moët Hennessy UK, says: “We are delighted to be supporting Develop, which will provide the resources to enhance the skills of hospitality workers affected by hardship and ensure that they are well placed to contribute to the future growth of the industry”.

Olly Smith, British TV presenter, award-winning wine expert, foodie, columnist and author and The Drinks Trust Patron, comments: “With the launch of Develop, The Drinks Trust marks new beginnings for the whole hospitality industry. More than ever, our industry needs a new generation of hospitality workforce. Through the available training, vocational opportunities and educational courses, The Drinks Trust aim to support current and new members of the industry help them to begin, retain and sustain a long-term career in the hospitality industry. As a Patron of The Drinks Trust, I am encouraging the industry to support this fantastic initiative and ultimately to help The Drinks Trust to build the sector back to its former strength, creating opportunities for those who need them the most.”

Courses are available to anyone who has worked or is currently working in the drinks and hospitality industry or new entrants to the industry. Courses have varying eligibility criteria, which candidates can consider before applying. To apply to any Develop courses, please visit https://www.drinkstrust.org.uk/leading-skills-educational-providers

Ross Carter adds: “We are encouraging anyone facing hardship and wanting to upskill within our industry, or those who want to begin a new career in the drinks hospitality industry, to apply to one of our leading educational courses: Wine & Spirit Education Trust, Institute of Brewing & Distilling, Mixology, European Bartender School and Barfection. As well as these courses, Develop provides an extensive resource library hosted by EdApp, and the opportunity to join our Drinks Community platform and its Mentoring programme. More training opportunities will be added in the coming months and the Develop offering will grow to offer more opportunity to more people.”

Industry businesses, be they brands, educators, distributors and operators, interested in understanding how best to support Develop, should contact Nicky Burston, Operations Manager at The Drinks Trust, at [email protected] to further the conversation.