Gerard Basset Travel Scholarship award launches

An annual travel bursary for UK-based sommeliers has been created in memory of the late Gerard Basset MS.

The £5,000 grant will be awarded to a sommelier each year to enable them to visit a winemaking country of their choice to explore its regions and winemakers.

The award has been created by Basset’s widow Nina and son Romané, along with Ronan Sayburn MS and Tim Atkin MW.

Nina said: “We want to ensure Gerard’s legacy lives on.  Education, mentoring and inspiring young sommeliers was something very dear to him and he always maintained that travelling to the wine regions of the world broadened his mind, his knowledge and wine experiences better than any other form of study ever could. It feels that this scholarship is definitely something he would have approved of wholeheartedly.”

Entrants must submit a written statement of up to 500 words detailing why they are applying, how they plan to spend the money and how they see it benefitting their careers.

Entries will be judged by Nina, Romané, Sayburn and Atkin and Tim and Laura Rhys, who will then select a shortlist of three candidates for an additional interview in order to determine a final winner.

The panel will also help with contacts and suggestions in the winner’s region of choice.

The inaugural fundraising dinner will be held at 67 Pall Mall in early 2020. Fifty guests will purchase a ticket and be asked to bring along a bottle of wine to share on the evening.

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