ISS Facility Services' defence division has been awarded a multimillion-pound "super" contract to operate all catering, retail and leisure facilities at 14 Royal Air Force stations across the country.
The seven-year deal, which industry experts estimate could be worth up to £50m, sees ISS take responsibility for the day-to-day management of officers' messes, sergeants' messes, junior ranks' dining rooms, bars, coffee shops and retail outlets.
The 14 RAF bases were previously operated by a mixture of contractors and in-house teams and more than 1,300 civil servants and contractor employees are expected to transfer under TUPE rules to ISS.
They will work alongside 480 RAF chefs and caterers to deliver what is described as a "super" catering, leisure and retail contract because this is the largest of its kind within the RAF.
Linda Jackson, projects director for ISS Facility Services, Defence, said: "I cannot fully convey just how proud and excited we are to work with the RAF, who have run an extremely sophisticated procurement process that has challenged us to find a really innovative new approach to catering, retail and leisure.
"The preparation is now complete and we are ready for launch. I would like to thank all of the RAF personnel who have supported the mobilisation of this contract and also all of our new colleagues who have maintained a positive approach throughout the process."
ISS has spent two years developing a bespoke offer for the RAF that is adapted according to the requirements of each site.
The RAF bases included in the contract are: Boscombe Down; Boulmer; Brize Norton; Coningsby; Honington; Leeming; Linton-on-Ouse; Lossiemouth; Marham; Northolt; St Mawgan; Waddington; Wittering; and Leuchars.
By Janie Stamford
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Published by: The Caterer