Catering Design Group toasts summer of successful refurbs

Daventry-based Catering Design Group (CDG) has completed four refurbishment projects this summer for schools and colleges, valued at a combined turnover of almost £900k.

Working to tight timescales to complete the works before the start of the autumn term, all four projects show CDG’s creative approach.

The first was the redevelopment of the kitchen and servery area at UWC Atlantic College, based at St Donat's Castle, a 12th century castle over-looking the Bristol Channel on the South Wales coast.

UWC Atlantic College develops compassionate global corporate citizens through its pioneering and distinctive IB educational model. Students from over 80 countries and from vastly differing environments, political, religious, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds live, work and achieve success together in this unique learning landscape.

Working with on-site caterers, Chartwells Independent, CDG has redeveloped the kitchen and servery area (pictured).

Helen Davis, CDG commercial director, said, “Last year, we designed and built a café area for the College’s new sports hall, so it was great to get this repeat business. The kitchen and servery area were looking tired from wear and tear. Our challenge was to ensure that our designs were in sympathy with the building and reflect UWC Atlantic College’s ethos.

“One of our design aims was to remove a suspended ceiling in order to expose the original timber ceiling above to enhance the space, taking the area back to its historic roots within the main castle building.”

At Birkenhead School, an independent day school in Oxton in The Wirral, CDG has re-designed the main kitchen, servery, dining room and Sixth Form catering facility.

This included changing the kitchen layout, the installation of a new ventilation system and increasing the servery area to extend the food offer. CDG re-designed the dining area and enhanced the Sixth Form facility by condensing the operational kitchen to increase the counter space to allow for a healthier food offer.

Kathryn Pell-Walpole, sales director of Chartwells Independent, said, “CDG are great partners to work with; as well as being completely on trend with finishes, they understand a caterers’ operational requirements, such as ergonomic flow and counter flow. The transformation at Birkenhead School is truly remarkable.”

At St Columba’s College, an independent Catholic day school for boys in St Albans, CDG transformed what was previously a lack-lustre ‘canteen-feel’ dining hall with a fresh, contemporary design based on four key colours to reflect the school’s branding.

The colours are now mirrored in cluster lights, furniture legs and frames. CDG included bespoke central ‘cross’ design conduit lighting to tie in the servery and seating area. The CDG team also designed and installed a 6th Form café, providing a small but modern facility for the pupils.

Paul Daly, bursar of St Columba's College, said, “Our goal was to enhance the dining experience for our pupils and staff and we now have a vibrant space with improved flows and new counters that showcase our food. Catering Design Group showed great creativity from the outset. They understood the brief and worked in partnership with us and our on-site caterers, Chartwells Independent, to realise our vision – from concept to completion.”

The fourth educational project was also repeat business for CDG. Following the design, build and the refurbishment of the kitchen, servery and dining areas at Kings Bruton, a boarding and day school in Bruton, Somerset last year, CDG were invited back to change a former a music teaching block into a new kitchen to support the school’s BTEC curriculum and act as a hospitality kitchen for functions.

The project involved the supply and installation of equipment, ventilation, new M&E works, works to walls and ceilings, as well as lighting and decoration.

Davis concluded, “We are fortunate to have loyal clients who know that we understand their business and appreciate the creative approach we take. It has been an incredibly busy summer, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.”