Monthly update from Verner Wheelock – June 2014 #monthlyupdate

Welcome to the June Monthly Update from Verner Wheelock

Bats in the Belfry

BatHere at Verner Wheelock we love to make our visitors and course members feel at home and always try to accommodate unusual requests. However, we were a bit taken aback by some of our recent drop-ins –baby bats!

On Wednesday, June 18th Jason discovered our first tiny visitor, lying on its back in the middle of the office floor. Hairless, and no bigger than a 50p piece, the poor little mite wasn’t moving and we all feared the worst. As bats are a protected species we had a responsibility to try and save it, so after a quick call to the Bat Conservation Trust, Kip the bat lady, was winging her way to our office.

Using a magnifying glass and an artist’s brush, she delicately dripped water into the bat’s mouth – which is perilously close to its nostrils making it easy to drown a bat by mistake. Miraculously, the patient made an instant recovery and Kip whisked him / her off for some specialist bat tlc.

As it happens, our offices are housed in the former stable yard of the 16th Century Broughton Hall, which apparently is also the nursery for the estate’s bat population. According to the bat lady the colony has probably been using our offices as a maternity ward for the past 100 years.

It should come as no surprise then, two days later, that Tetley (AKA ‘Bat Dog’) sniffed out another winged crusader… this time even smaller than its cousin. Bat Lady Kip, was back on duty to look after this little one…

Check out baby number 1 in the photo above.

Bat count so far: 2

Footloose in the Dales

Carole and friendsCongratulations to our intrepid explorer Carole Dickason who successfully completed The Dalesway Walk this month. Carole enjoyed a week’s holiday as she and her friends stepped out on the final leg of this 76-mile trek that starts in Ilkley, West Yorkshire and ends on the shores of Lake Windermere in the Lake District.

Carole is pictured (centre) next to the ‘I Walked the Dalesway’ sign with Lake Windermere in the background, as proof of her impressive achievement.

Harrogate Speciality Food Show

photo 1We had a wonderful two days meeting visitors, exhibitors and fellow Deliciously Yorkshire members at the Harrogate Speciality Food Show last month.

Organised by The Guild of Fine Food (of which we are a Member), the Food Show brought together first-time and long-standing exhibitors, such as food and drink producers, independent delicatessens, farm shops and food halls.

We were part of the deliciouslyorkshire @ Speciality Food ‘Meet the Buyer’ event that puts small, artisan producers in the spotlight. They showcased their offering to a selection of key buyers, including major supermarkets, wholesalers, independent retailers, and hospitality businesses.

We made lots of new contacts which have already generated fresh enquiries for our training courses and handed out 70 much coveted Verner Wheelock travel mugs, amongst other freebies.

A special June discount offer was available to our visitors during the show, and we’ve added another for July and August – 10% discount off any open or in-house course booked by the end of August for DY or GFF members.

Double Delight

June was an exceptionally busy month for Auditing and HACCP courses at VW, with many students doubling-up for both of these popular and effective courses.

If you are interested in finding out more about these courses contact Claire Lennon: 01756 700802.

FDQ approved Auditing courses

PrintWe are very pleased to announce that we have had our suite of auditing courses approved by FDQ. Since their recent approved status, we have already seen a healthy take-up in candidates. So far we have trained over 100 learners on our Auditing Skills Certificate course and soon we will have trained 50 delegates on the Lead Auditor Certificate course. Both courses are available either as open courses based at our training centre at the picturesque Broughton Hall Business Park in Skipton, the gateway to the Yorkshire Dales; or as in-house courses. For more information contact….


Our list of food industry clients is long and illustrious but we are also the ‘go to’ trainer for a growing number of producers in the drinks sector. This month we saw a particularly big uptake from brewery companies with a thirst for knowledge and training.

Next Generation of Expertise

Auditing Skills courseSixth Form student, Libby Richmond joined us for work experience during June. Libby is really keen to pursue a career in the food industry and wants to study food and nutrition at university. Instead of sitting behind a desk for the duration of her work experience, we enrolled her on the Nutrition, Auditing and HACCP courses so she could get a real insight into these aspects of the industry. As a result Libby is keener than ever to be a part of the next generation of Food industry movers and shakers.

Libby says:

“As an A level student interested in Food and Human Nutrition, expanding my experience and knowledge in the industry is essential to enhance my University application and broaden my horizons. Thanks to VWA I completed three courses, Nutrition, HACCP and Auditing training, all in the beautiful grounds of Broughton Hall. Not only will these accreditations add respected interest to my personal statement for University, they have also provided me with relevant and innovative information.

“My initial fears of being a ’student’ amongst professionals was soon eased by the fabulous friendly tutors, who were engaging, and nothing was too much trouble. Attending the courses and having had the opportunity to work alongside so many different skilled people has further confirmed my decision to study Nutrition and further investigate food in terms of development and manufacturing.

“Thank you, Alison and your fabulous team for this wonderful opportunity and experience.”

We wish her all the very best in her A level exams and university studies, and hope to see her on a VW course in the future!

Libby is pictured (front row, second from left) with her fellow Auditing Skills delegates.

Tour de France

Being a stone’s throw from Skipton, North Yorkshire it has been impossible for us to ignore the fact that the cycling world’s greatest race of the year is about to pedal past on July 5th-6th. The Grand Depart (the official start of this famous race) will be following a number of stages through Yorkshire before Le Tour heads off to Cambridge, London and then on to French soil for the race to continue in its entirety.

Good luck to all the riders!

July Training Courses

14 – 17 RSPH Level 4 Award in HACCP for Food Manufacturing (1 place)

21 RSPH Foundation Certificate in HACCP (Level 2)

21 – 22 RSPH Level 3 Award in HACCP for Food Manufacturing

23 HACCP Refresher

All courses take place in Skipton, unless otherwise stated

Contact Claire Lennon on 01756 700802 or email for availability.  See the full Training Calendar here.

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