“The Cheshire Cookery School was born out of my philosophy that good food is at the heart of all that matters in life; it is an expression of our connection to each other and to our environment.”
Andrew Warnes, Founder and Managing Director

Andrew Warnes
Andrew Warnes | Founder & Managing Director

Andrew’s passion for food is the driving force behind The Cheshire Cookery School. He founded it in 2009 when he realised he could turn this passion into a business. Preparation for evening meals begins early in Andrew’s house – around 10 o’clock in the morning! Unsurprisingly, Andrew’s form of relaxation is cooking and watching cooking programs on TV. He’s renowned for his dinner parties as well as his business brain.

Loves: Lisa’s Lemon Tart

Lisa Warnes
Lisa Warnes | Founder & Director

The School’s organisational whiz, Lisa is one of the founder members of the cookery school. She has an infectious enthusiasm for creating the best event or class for customers, and goes out of her way to make people feel welcome. Lisa loves planning the menus with the chefs, and hates waste – she can often be found making batches of soup with any leftover ingredients in the school!

Loves: Scallop and Asparagus Risotto (washed down with cold white wine)

Marc Mattocks
Marc Mattocks | Chef

Chef Marc Mattocks is a key and inspirational member of the team, bringing fresh ideas and recipes to the school. Marc teaches all levels of cookery classes but specialises in more advanced cooking techniques. A career spanning 19 years Marc is a highly professional award winning chef, with a strong background in Michelin & AA Rosette rated restaurants & hotels. He has taken part in various stages with some of the top Michelin rated restaurants in the world, whilst also making his own mark as Head Chef in various award winning establishments across the UK.

Loves: Slow Roast Pork Belly

Kurt Thomas
Kurt Thomas | Chef

Chef Kurt Thomas is a popular member of our team – having over 35 years’ experience in the industry Kurt is affectionately known as ‘Pops’ by fellow chefs. Kurt is classically trained, and able to turn his hand to all cooking styles. He is confident and happiest around people and is a great team leader. Being a natural teacher Kurt’s ambition is to help guide chefs and keen cooks, inspiring them and educating them by passing on experiences gained through a life as a chef.

Loves: Crisp shard of smoked salmon with lemon and dill mayo

Jimmy Dennitts | Chef

A highly professional chef with an aptitude for rustic, home cooked, flavourful food. Gaining accolades and plaudits alike whilst working with some of the most recognised chefs in the North West. Jimmy is most at home with his modern British style encompassing influences from Spain & Italy. Experience in running high profile, private events to Michelin level kitchens whilst being fully conversed with all modern trends of food safety legislation and procedures.

Loves: Steak and Ale Pie

Geraldine Dobson
Geraldine Dobson | Chef / Consultant Home Economist

Geraldine’s love of food has been handed down the maternal line – her mother was a superb cook and her grandmother was housekeeper for a Bishop. With this inspiration Geraldine honed her skills in the food and domestic appliances industries demonstrating cooking, styling food for photo shoots, exhibiting, and developing recipes. She has lectured at Liverpool John Moore’s University and shares her knowledge of cooking in an enthusiastic and relaxed way. Another keen traveller, Geraldine’s experience demonstrating cooking for Chinese TV was a real eyeopener, she says: “I was a bit surprised when some of the ingredients were not only very fresh, but actually still alive!”
Loves: Veal with mushroom and Marsala sauce

Jason Palin
Jason Palin | Chef

Jason has been with The Cheshire Cookery School from the beginning and is a key member of the team. His warm and friendly manner puts customers at ease and his classes are full of smiles and laughter. As an avid traveller, Jason loves sharing new ideas, and stories, from his travels around the world. He has worked with some of the most influential chefs and in the most amazing culinary surroundings in the world including: working with Australian chef Dietmer Sawyere, a driving force behind the evolution of Australian cuisine; working as chef at the famous Le Manoir Aux Quat’ Saisons at Great Milton in Oxfordshire; cooking for many high profile business leaders and stars in places like Gstaad, Switzerland and Washington DC.
Loves: The food of South East Asia

Helen Robinson
Helen Robinson | Cook

Helen has been an enthusiastic cook and baker since a child, with baking being her passion. She produces her own Artisan Home Baking range through her company The Pocket Pantry to help encourage children, young people and non-bakers to get baking! After a spell of living in Thailand, plus many visits to South East Asia, Thai food remains Helen’s No1 foodie heaven (after cake obviously!) and she can often be found hunting down authentic ingredients and sauces to try and recreate some of her favourite dishes “a green papaya salad has to be one of the front runners in my world, the deliciously fresh and fragrant ingredients are totally to die for”.

Loves: Anything from Thailand!

Julie Harrison
Julie Harrison | Cookery School Manager

You’ll find Julie in just about every area of the cookery school. When she’s not managing and co-ordinating events, she helps support the chefs during classes and demonstrations. Her philosophy in life, the ‘Design is in the Detail’, comes from over 25 years working in interiors and kitchen design. Since joining the school in 2012, Julie has become a valued member of the team. Her ability to create a real sense of team spirit is matched only by her total commitment to high quality service and fostering great communication. Julie is a breath of fresh air and totally unflappable.

Loves: Tapas, Lemons, Chorizo, and TLC!

Julie Penkathman
Julie Penkethman | Office Administrator

No business can run smoothly without a brilliant administrator, so it’s great that we have Julie to keep our office ticking over perfectly. Julie has been with the school since the beginning and she looks after all the paperwork, including the class menus and recipe handouts. A fun and friendly person to have around, she is always willing to help our chefs and customers. Julie loves baking and makes Christmas foodie hampers for all her friends – luckily we get to taste her creations first. And if she asks you, do say yes to her outstanding milky coffee.

Loves: Lobster & fillet steak – she’s a Surf & Turf girl.

Alexander Diamond
Alexander Diamond | Senior Chef’s Assistant

Alexander is a firm favourite with both chefs and customers. Helping out whenever needed he is an invaluable assistant to the school. He has been with us since we started, and is an experimental and adventurous cook. Alexander has a big brain and plans to study law at university. But until then he’ll continue to be a dab hand with the fairy liquid, as well as the person customers often want to take home. His favourite days at the cookery school are working with the kids at the kids cookery club.

Loves: His Greek Grandmas traditional ‘Peas in the Meat’ dish.

Jasmine Jones
Jasmine Jones | Senior Chef’s Assistant

Jasmine is a joy to have around the cookery school. Fluent in Spanish and French, she plans to study History of Art at university. However, working in school is swaying her – she recently spent three weeks training with chef Gian Carlo Caldasi at his restaurant in the UK’s culinary hotspot, Bray. Jasmine joined us in 2011 and not only is she kind and helpful, she is a very organised and a massive fan of the labelling machine.

Loves: Pasta dishes and all things Italian.

Julie Bowdon
Julie Bowden | Accounts

Where would we be without Julie? She runs a very tight ship and keeps our finances in order. The only thing that stops Julie from checking the accounts is travelling around in her vintage VW van with her family. She has a smallholding and aspires to be Felicity Kendall from the Good Life in her spare time.

Loves: Fillet steak with peppercorn sauce and Dauphinoise potatoes and fine green beans
(being an accountant she is very specific).

Billy Jones | Apprentice chef

Billy is the newest and youngest member of our team. His enthusiasm and positive attitude are an asset to the school. Billy’s ambition is to be a chef and he is well on his way. As well as being a whizz in the kitchen, he is Lisa’s right hand man in the office.

Loves: Loves sirloin steak with chips (cooked in goose fat of course! )

“We are very proud of what we have achieved over the last two and half years – the school is going from strength to strength and we love the fantastic feedback and big smiles that we get after each class!”
Lisa Warnes, Founder & Director