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Tender opportunity: Wysing Arts Centre

Written by:
Written by:
Tender opportunity: Wysing Arts Centre

Wysing Arts Centre is an internationally renowned cultural campus for learning and art production. Every year, hundreds of artists, musicians, writers, choreographers and dancers from across the UK and beyond come to work at Wysing, with many staying in our onsite accommodation.

We are looking for a catering provider that can embrace the context of Wysing as creative and cultural workplace. Alongside providing a café offer for the artists who come to work at Wysing, and the public who visit our exhibitions and wide-ranging events programmes, we want to create a café that will welcome local freelance workers, cycling groups and families. The café can be the heart of the artistic community of Wysing. We are looking to work in partnership with a café provider to develop this identity and offer.

It is important for us to have a high quality food offer that caters for vegans, vegetarians and those with special dietary requirements, alongside café staff with excellent barista skills. Due to our rural location, we want the café at Wysing to be a destination, both for the cultural context where customers might be sitting next to artists or musicians from New York, as well as closer to home, as well as for the amazing and memorable food and coffee that will make them want to return time and again.

Ideally, we are looking for:
• a small to medium artisan catering or food business offering a good quality menu that caters for a range of dietary needs;
• a business with a brand ethos that complements that of a shared workspace and cultural campus;
• a business owner who would like to work in partnership with us to create a vibrant meeting place and social hub for creatives and freelancers, with a willingness to consider hosting events and activities related to Wysing’s programme;
• a caterer who has other sales avenues that supports the business operation during times of low footfall.

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ABOUT WYSING
Established in 1989 and located nine miles west of Cambridge, close to the village of Bourn, Wysing Arts Centre delivers a range of programmes for artists and the public. Wysing’s site is comprised of ten separate buildings across 11 acres of land alongside a growing collection of outdoor sculpture. The site also hosts as music recording studio and record label. The majority of the buildings include artists’ studios, with up to twenty artists and staff work on the site every day. In addition, across the year, artists travel from across the UK and internationally to take part in residencies, retreats, and other activity, staying in on-site accommodation for up to eight weeks.

THE CAFÉ AND SITE
Although currently closed, we have had a café offer at Wysing since 2016 and the café already has catering equipment in place, alongside furnishings. We have a small budget for some improvements to the furnishings, in discussion with the new provider.

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Consumables and crockery are not provided. A list of kitchen equipment and a floor plan can be made available on request.

The café has previously operated Monday to Friday 9.30am to 4.30pm and Saturdays and Sundays 10am to 4pm. There is scope to be flexible about public opening hours.The main seating area measures 13 x 5.3 m (approx. 67 square metres) with an additional kitchen area with an open hatch, measuring 3.5 x 5.3 m (including counter and cupboards). There is an outdoor seating area with wooden picnic tables and there is scope to explore an onsite allotment to provide vegetables and produce if of interest.

There is ample parking space for vehicles on site and easy access to the kitchen area for deliveries. The site has 24-hour access and is locked overnight. A care-taker lives on the site. There is optional storage space and a potential desk space on site.

HOW TO MAKE AN EXPRESSION OF INTEREST
If you would like to visit the site for a tour and an informal conversation about this opportunity, please contact Ceri Littlechild, Head of Operations on ceri.littlechild@wysingartscentre.org telephone 01954 717104.

We are inviting expressions of interest in this opportunity and ask that you provide a written proposal to include:
• Your approach to the context of Wysing and a creative and cultural workplace and how you see this working in relation to the café.
• How you see your business operating in partnership with Wysing and how being at Wysing would support the development of your business;
• Information on your business and the type of food you are producing or intending to produce (please include a sample menu and prices);
• A short statement explaining your relevant skills and experience and how long you have been trading;
• Submission of 3-5 images of your current operation to demonstrate the visual identity of your brand, if applicable;
• Outline of your income and expenditure forecast for a year ahead.
The deadline for expressions of interest is 5pm 31 Jan 2019.

 

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