The Challenge

Tante Marie Culinary Academy, co-owned by Gordon Ramsay, is the UK’s longest established independent cookery school. Over the past 60 years, it has achieved an internationally acclaimed reputation for its courses in culinary skills. All of which are in high demand by professional students, as many go on to having long-lasting and successful careers in this industry.

The team at Tante Marie initially approached us seeking our expertise for the management and redesign of their eCommerce website. Indeed, their old website was in need of a make-over – a fresh, professional and clean new design that reflected their premium credibility. Alongside that, we were also asked to develop and incorporate an e-commerce platform for their lifestyle courses to be easily accessed, booked and paid for online by the general public.

Graduates of Tante Marie are now running successful businesses all over the world. To host their community of current students and alumni, we were asked to create a student management system. This was to provide existing students an online portal where they could explore their course information and timetables. Whilst also being a place for them to connect with alumni; and for both communities to explore informative articles, recipes, events and career opportunities.

The Solution

Initially seeking our expertise in Drupal for the management and redesign of their website, we soon learnt their marketing team had knowledge of WordPress. Given this, we thought it would be best to use this CMS for custom-building Tante Marie’s new website. We presented them with a few different design concepts as we wanted to ensure the new design reflected the professionalism and credibility of Tante Marie. Therefore, our in-house design team worked to improve colour schemes, structure and content presentation which all tied in with their existing branding and logo. During this part of the work, the team at Tante Marie loved our new design so much that we then rolled this out into creating them new prospectus brochures.

We also used WooCommerce software to create them a manageable online platform for course bookings and payments. One of the benefits of using WooCommerce is how well it integrates with sites developed in WordPress, so this ensured the continuity of design on course-booking pages.

We have also used WordPress to create the back-end system for the community of current students and alumni. This is built with customised user roles which have different permissions for the admin team at Tante Marie. This is to help them easily manage all administrative duties associated with this system.

The Results & The Future

Their website is now more aesthetically pleasing and offers users a clean and sleek design with a much better user-experience. This is due to the improved organisation of content making it far more streamlined and user-friendly. It looks more professional and is in keeping with their existing branding since the colours, fonts and visuals successfully reflect their high-quality and premium services in culinary training.

The student management system is and continues to make the process of creating a community of alumni more manageable and paperless. The system is a way of Tante Marie to express how proud they are of all their students and alumni. It’s created an opportunity for Tante Marie to continue growing their community and keeping past and present students connected with one another for exciting networking and career opportunities.