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HIT Heroes Award Winners Announced for 2021

Posted on 17 January, 2022


The HIT Heroes Awards aims to recognise the important role that apprenticeships have to play in empowering people of all ages and walks of life in the hospitality industry. The awards highlight the amazing work of both apprentices and apprenticeship employers across the country and celebrate the individual drive and development of apprentices to become future hospitality leaders.

Apprentices and apprenticeship employers across the country were asked to nominate themselves or others for a prestigious HIT Heroes Award, with our category winners showcasing the diverse range of apprenticeships available within the sector, including Extra Mile Apprentice of the Year, Hospitality Apprentice of the Year, and Best Community Outreach Employer of the Year.

Members of the hospitality are now invited to take part in a vote to choose the all-important award winners – Overall Apprentice of the Year and Employer of the Year.

Jill Whittaker, Managing Director at HIT Training, commented:

“I’m so proud of the incredible work undertaken by both our apprentices and apprenticeship employers this year. Despite these challenging times, our award winners have gone above and beyond, and we’re delighted to not only recognise their hard work, but to also highlight the immense talent developing within the hospitality industry.

“I’d like to wish a huge congratulations to all of our winners so far, and encourage everyone to read their stories and vote for our overall HIT Apprentice and HIT Employer of the Year for 2021.”

HIT Heroes Award Winners 2021


  • Johnny Daws – Hospitality Apprentice of the Year – Sponsored by GetMyFirstJob
  • Daniel Rox Palomeque – Chef Apprentice of the Year – Sponsored by Koppert Cress
  • Michael Mercer – Leadership Apprentice of the Year – Sponsored by Institute of Hospitality
  • Mason Carman – Extra Mile Apprentice of the Year – Sponsored by Professional Assessment Limited

Apprenticeship Employers:

  • Beyond Food Foundation – Small Employer of the Year – Sponsored by British Institute of Innkeeping
  • The Star at Cotton – Medium Employer of the Year – Sponsored by Flow Learning by Mapal
  • Compass Group UK & Ireland – Large Employer of the Year – Sponsored by Hospitality Jobs UK
  • YHA (England & Wales) – Best Community Outreach Employer of the Year – Sponsored by Professional Assessment Ltd

Voting for this year’s HIT Heroes Awards is now open and will close on Thursday 27th January. You can place your vote by visiting

The overall winners will be announced during the awards celebration – keep your eyes peeled for further details!

You can watch the 2021 HIT Heroes Awards Celebration event on the HIT Training Facebook page or YouTube channel.


It was great speaking to our account manager, Catherine, this afternoon and great to hear that HIT are being so supportive with our apprentices, I found the call very positive in a time of crisis, so thank you.

The Learner’s leaflet is great and being sent out to Apprentices and Line Managers following our communication last week providing a great follow up.

Jonathan Foot - Head of Apprenticeships, Compass Group

McMullen’s chose HIT as its sole external provider for Apprenticeships and vocational qualifications in early 2015 and since then we have found them a pleasure to work with.  Their expertise in this sector is superior and they have proven to be a professional and supportive partner who have a passion for learning and development, which matches our own organisation.

Amanda Walden – Training & Recruitment Manager, McMullen's

Encouraging our staff to improve their skills set and supporting them through apprenticeships and training programmes underlines our commitment to help them further develop their own careers. Offering the Level 4 Higher Apprenticeship also gives the Brend Group a point of difference which I’m convinced will help attract new members of staff in the future.

Andrew Mosedale - Group HR Manager, Brend Hotels

Our partnership with HIT has certainly made recruitment much easier in a very difficult labour market and gives us a point of difference in an increasingly competitive environment.  Kew Green has also benefited enormously from well trained, skilled and competent staff who contribute significantly to the ever improving and high levels of customer experience that our guests expect and deserve.

Andrew Tregenza - HR Business Partner, Kew Green Hotels

Apprenticeships allow us to give people a great opportunity to develop a career with us and learn a skill or trade that will accompany them throughout their career and life. We see progression to the Level 4 qualification as key to our strategy of providing development at all stages of an employee’s career with Harrison.

Alex Taylor - Training Manager, Harrison Catering Services

HIT Training has provided such an incredible support to us during lockdown, with regular webinar invitations, videocalls and engagement solutions. Our business focus shifted to learning and development and we managed to enrol 3 times more apprentices on training programmes than before!

Anastasia Talatzidou -L&D Manager, Gaucho


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