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European Vocational Skills Week
News announcement20 November 2017Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion1 min read

Bad boys get baking


An ESF-funded bakery project in the UK is helping prison inmates to gain new skills and find work after their sentences have ended.
The concept of the Bad Boys’ Bakery is simple: teach inmates valuable vocational skills to help them find work and successfully re-join society after leaving prison.
Established at Brixton Prison by chef Gordon Ramsay in 2012, the bakery project now runs as a social enterprise thanks to support from the ESF. Inmates receive on-the-job training over 8-12 weeks and have the chance to gain qualifications in food production. The products they produce are also sold in local shops, benefiting the Brixton economy.
The support provided through the project isn’t just practical; inmates have access to a care workers who can help them to draft CVs, arrange IDs and set up bank accounts too. The project also allows for additional mentoring to be offered after inmates have left the prison.
In the first three years, more than 100 people benefited from the Bad Boys’ Bakery’s training and activities. Of the inmates that passed through the bakery during this time, one in three found work after leaving prison and only 3% reoffended within the first year of their release – significantly less than the 47% national average.
Want to find out more? Check out the links below:
About the project
Erasmus+ Project Results Platform (VET)
Inclusive approaches (ESF website)
Promoting social enterprise (ESF website)


  • Professional organisation or social partner