A BUDDING chef hopes to inspire others to take the plunge into education in 2013.

Lawrence Fulton, aged 52, has fulfilled his dream of becoming a professional chef, thanks to a bursary, which funded his tuition at Riverside College.

He has applied to train at an interrnational hotel and hopes to work abroad.

Former grounds maintenance worker, Lawrence, from Upton, Widnes, said: “I’d highly recommend this bursary.

“I’m really happy on my course. It’s hard work but worth it. I’ve made themed dishes recently, which has been hugely enjoyable.”

Lawrence developed his passion for cooking after living all over the world.

He said: “I’ve learnt lots about difference cuisines, particularly after working in New Mexico and Manhattan.”

Lawrence will have mastered how to cook all types of meat, fish and vegetables, as well as baking and sauce making, by the time he finishes his course in June.

Many tenants have transformed their lives since Halton Housing Trust, which manages 6,150 homes across Runcorn and Widnes, launched the bursary last year.

Trust customer involvement officer, Debbie Jameson, said: ““The New Year is a fantastic time to start learning something new because people feel motivated and fresh.

“Courses can sometimes be too expensive for people on benefits who are trying to get back into work. Quite often they can’t afford fees, uniforms or equipment. The bursary that we offer is there to help people like Lawrence, so we encourage tenants to get in touch.”

Tenants who are unemployed or work less than 14 hours a week can apply.

For more details, call Debbie Jameson on 0151 510 5185 or Michelle Phillips on 0151 510 5184.