Dorset Food & Drink held an event at The Lesley Waters Cookery School to celebrate Lesley joining the organisation as an ambassador to promote Dorset’s finest food and drink. 30 member businesses from across the county came to mark the occasion with Lesley, the Dorset Food & Drink team and corporate partners Porter Dodson. Dorset Food & Drink members contributing to the canape feast at the cookery school in Halstock were Dorset Pastry, Ford Farm Cheese, BV Dairy, Goldhill Organics, Capreolus, Dorset Blue Vinny, Wobbly Cottage, Brace of Butchers, The Watercress Company and Solkiki chocolates. Liberty Fields and Furleigh Estate provided a Dorset twist on the classic bellini cocktail to toast the occasion.

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Lesley Waters, well known for her television appearances, studied French Cuisine for three years at Ealing College including time as a chef at the Waldorf Hotel. During this training period, she won one gold, and two silver medals at Hotelympia and was awarded a scholarship to the Hotel Intercontinental, Dusseldorf. She joined Prue Leith's restaurant and was quickly promoted to senior chef. She then worked as a freelance corporate chef and caterer for government officials before joining Leith's School of Food and Wine as an instructor, rising to head tutor.
In addition to her television work with Ready Steady Cook, Great Food Live and This Morning, Lesley is also the author of several Cookery Books, a qualified Fitness Instructor and a mother of two! Originally a Londoner born & bred, Lesley was quickly charmed by the beauty of the West Dorset area and inspired by the superb quality of the fresh local produce available right on her doorstep. She likes to cook seasonal food whenever possible and her simple, modern style creates dishes that are easy to recreate with stunning results. Teaching has always been her great passion and opening her own Cookery School in this amazing location is the realisation of a long held dream. Her energetic style of presentation is expertly combined with clear and simple guidance, making her classes both entertaining and informative.

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Dorset Food & Drink is a non-profit organisation representing the very best of locally produced food and drink. Dorset Food & Drink promotes, supports, encourages and celebrates the amazingly vibrant food and drink sector in this county. With around 200 member businesses, Dorset Food & Drink covers the whole local food scene from the small kitchen producer to the county’s top brands, from street food to fine dining, farms, distributors and places to learn.
As a county, Dorset has a fantastic range of fine fresh produce, and is increasingly being known as ‘the larder of the southwest’. With outstanding protected landscapes, 8000 years of farming and fishing heritage, market towns, coastal communities, clean seas, rural villages and lively towns it is easy to see why Dorset can produce the wonderful array of local food and drink. Whatever you’re looking for, whether it be some freshly cooked sausages or seafood, handcrafted chocolates or cheese, or even a bottle of beer, cider, wine, gin or vodka, you’ll be sure to find it through Dorset Food & Drink.

For more information on Dorset Food & Drink contact: Katharine Wright, T/: 01305 228239; M/: 07584255460 or E/:

Image copyright remains with photographer Richard Budd

High res images are available on request

Editor’s Notes
Dorset Food & Drink is a member-based organisation with a special trademarked brand overseen by the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty team. It represents Dorset's food and drink business community bringing a strong and vibrant sector together under one banner. As well as promoting what Dorset has to offer, it provides excellent networking opportunities for its members and specialist advice on a number of topics, including environmental issues and support to improve your businesses environmental sustainability.
The Lesley Waters Cookery School at Abbot’s Hill Farm nestles in the heart of the West Dorset countryside. It is about fresh, simple ingredients and creating great food. But it’s not just about the cooking it’s the whole day, meeting people and enjoying the atmosphere where you can relax, learn and laugh. We pride ourselves on creating a relaxed and friendly atmosphere and you will take home with you the knowledge and the know how to create simple and stylish food with confidence and flair. No expert skills are needed you just need to enjoy food and good company. The school offers a wide range of interesting 1 day hands on days, workshops and demonstration days for all abilities, including Bread and Pastry, Cooler than Chillies, By the Sea, Seasonal and Vegetarian Kitchen. Please see to find out what Les has been up to and for more details of the courses. Or you can email us at or call us on 0844 800 4633.

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