The group was chosen from 37 semi finalists from five regions across the UK, with each competitor asked to cook for their regional judging panel as well as high-profile partnering chefs.
These were Will Holland for Wales and the Midlands, Simon Hulstone for the South West, Anna Hansen for London and the South East, Mark Greenaway for Scotland and Northern Ireland and Frances Atkins for the North.
Worth over £35,000, the Scholarship Award title will award the winner a place on the school’s prestigious Diplôme de Pâtisserie, followed by a three month Diploma in Culinary Management.
The prize also includes luxury accommodation in central London from contest partner Urbanest, and an internship with Clare Smyth MBE at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in Hospital Road, Chelsea, at which Smyth has been head chef for six years and became the first British female chef to hold and retain three Michelin stars.
This year saw a record number of applications from people of all ages and backgrounds, according to Le Cordon Bleu, which holds the awards in a bid to raise awareness of, and help, the shortage of chefs in the industry today.
Loic Malfait, academic director at Le Cordon Bleu London and member of the scholarship judging panel, said: “It’s been a pleasure partnering with the chefs from each region, all of whom have played a key role in helping us find passionate and hardworking candidates.
“This year the calibre of applicant has been fantastically high, which means the final is going to be tough. Ultimately we are looking for someone who has a love for pâtisserie and is looking for a long term career in the industry.”
Le Cordon Bleu London is the UK outpost of the 50-strong international network of French-influenced culinary training schools, which has been managed by Andre Cointreau since 1984.
Full list of finalist names in alphabetical order
- Francezka Bell
- Emily Black
- Hannah Cannell
- Jessica Deakin
- Lawri Dowie
- Maria Elisavet Kostaki
- Bethany Marsh
- Keiron Murphy
- Ka-Lai Poon
- Olivia Potts
- Tim Schilling
- Annabelle Spence
- Megan Roberts
- Sophie Rogers