A little touch of Lancashire hospitality in the Swiss Alps

PUBLISHED: 15:24 24 November 2011 | UPDATED: 20:21 20 February 2013

Clive Taylor in his office at Les Roches

Clive Taylor in his office at Les Roches

Lancastrian Clive Taylor is the man in charge of one of the world's leading hospitality schools

When Lancashire won the County Championship the cheer that went up around the county was echoed in the Swiss Alps where Clive Taylor works at one of the worlds best hospitality schools.

Clive, who is originally from Droylsden, is the Campus Director of Les Roches, where he has charge of 1,200 students from 93 different countries and is responsible for day to day running of the school.

I am still a member of Lancashire Cricket Club and make sure I get to a game when I visit England in the summer, said Clive, whose wife Stephanie is from Oswaldtwistle.

Students from Les Roches go on to work in tourism, catering, airlines, cruise liners, golf management and five star hotels. From his office 4,000ft up in the Alps at Les Roches, about an hours drive from Lausanne, the 50-year-old said: We offer a high quality education in a wonderful living environment.

My background is in education in Lancashire, progressing from teacher of sport and music to head of department, head of faculty and deputy headteacher in two large 11-19 high schools.

I have also taught football in America and Canada and my wife had worked as a language assistant in France. I suppose we got itchy feet and that, coupled with the reputation of Les Roches, led to the move to Switzerland.

Our girls, Sarah and Amelia, were just primary school age when we moved from Ramsbottom. They have grown up totally bilingual, attending the local primary and high schools.

The Swiss hospitality standard and methods have traditionally been regarded by the industry as the best in the world. In a recent survey of leading hotel managers, Les Roches was voted among the top three schools of its kind. The other two are also in Switzerland.

So while he has a panoramic view of the Alps with its top ski and tourist resorts, is there anything this Lancastrian misses about his home county?
The Ribble Valley was always a favourite drive any time of the year, he said. I have happy memories of stopping off at the top hotels and restaurants in picturesque towns and tucked away villages.

From the restaurant side, I have always been very impressed with Paul Heathcote and Andrew Nutter but above all, the warmth of Lancashire hospitality is world renowned. I speak to many top people in the industry and its something that regularly comes up in conversation.

And is there anything the Swiss can teach Lancashire? Well, not just Lancashire but Britain as a whole. The trains here run like clockwork. If that happened in the UK, I might get to Old Trafford in time for the first over.

From Lancashire to the world

For further information on Les Roches, go to www.lesroches.edu and if you are a Lancastrian who works abroad, tell us your story. Write to us letters@lancashirelife.co.uk.

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The print version of this article appeared in the December 2011 issue of Lancashire Life

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