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Chichester College students create festive ‘feast’ for Petworth House exhibition

9 December 2021

Chichester College students have been demonstrating their spirit of Christmas with a special display at Petworth House.

Four patisserie students were invited to create a table display, themed around a Victorian Christmas, using a number of sugar craft and bakery techniques.

They have spent the past six weeks creating concept designs and a number of beautifully crafted products – including a cake masquerading as ‘A Christmas Carol’, a pastillage Christmas pudding and mince pies, a Twelfth Night cake adorned with intricate white flowers and fruit hand-crafted using sugar – which are now on display in the kitchens at the historic house.

Amy, who is in her third year at the college, said: “It’s been a fantastic experience, we’ve really enjoyed this project.

“I can’t believe people are going to be able to view our work at Petworth House. It’s a bit surreal, but worth the hard work.”

Lecturer Vanessa Hawes added: “The students have all worked really hard on their pieces, which also form part of their assessments.

“They’ve done a really good job, excelling at the complicated techniques needed to execute some of the intricate designs – and the items are incredibly realistic. I think the mince pies look even nicer than real ones!

“We hope the visitors to Petworth House enjoy the display and can appreciate the hours of effort our students have put into their display, they have shown a great attention to detail.”

The display is part of the Petworth House ‘Festive Traditions’ exhibition, which runs until Monday 3 January 2022 and takes visitors on a journey of Christmases through the years.

Sarah Taylor, Senior Programming and Partnerships Officer at the National Trust, said: “We are absolutely delighted with the final display of edible themed goodies in the Historic Kitchens here at Petworth House.

“You can see the creativity and thought that the students from Chichester College have put into their pieces. They are just incredible.”

To find out more about visiting Petworth House, visit

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