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Charlie Day -  Ballymaloe Cookery School Alumni

Since graduating from our 12 Week Certificate course in 2012, Charlie Day has gone on to launch his own successful business - Day's Kitchen - in his native Co. Wicklow. Regulars of Kilruddery Farm Market on Saturdays, or Stillorgan Village's Wednesday market, will be familiar with his stalls where he offers a range of delicious homemade cakes, sweet treats, baked goods and breads.

Having previously worked in the motor trade, one of the biggest casualities of the recent economic recession, Charlie decided to make a complete career change at the end of 2011 and enrolled at Ballymaloe Cookery School on our January 12 Week Certificate with hopes of subsequently carving out a new career path. His passion throughout the course was for baking, especially breads, and he was a regular at Timmy's evening sourdough workshops. Inspired by Darina's advocacy of farmers markets and equipped with new business skills acquired on the 12 week course, the idea for his own market stall was clear in his mind by the time graduation came around, but it wasn't going to be an easy task to start up a new business in unchartered territory in the midst of a recession.

Almost four years on, Charlie has successfully grown Day's Kitchen from its fledgling stall at Stillorgan Village to now a well established trader at three well-known weekly markets - Stillorgan and Blackrock Shopping Centres in Dublin, and Kilruddery Farm market in Co. Wicklow. He has developed a cult following for his delicious doughnuts and gluten-free carrot cake, and in addition to baking every morning fresh for the markets, he takes orders for cakes and caters for private events.

If you are wondering where you recognise Charlie from, it's probably because he was a finalist in Masterchef Ireland 2014!

Alumni Tags: farmer's market