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Fire strikes head office of private caterer Party Ingredients

11 June 2009 by
Fire strikes head office of private caterer Party Ingredients

Chef-restaurateur Peter Gladwin's private catering business, Party Ingredients, suffered a major fire at its head office and kitchens last week.

The cause of the blaze, which started in the early hours of the morning last Tuesday (2 June), is unclear at this stage but being investigated.

It destroyed the company's head office space and parts of its production kitchen in Nine Elms near Vauxhall, south London.

However, Party Ingredients continued to honour all of its commitments to its clients including the catering of five events on the day of the fire itself.

Managing director Gladwin paid tribute to his staff. "It was an incredible effort, all the events had to be put together from scratch," he said.

"We not only had to buy all the food again but also source all the equipment right down to staff uniforms while working from a car park, without access to our building."

Party Ingredients is now operating from temporary offices and kitchens. Gladwin added that the support from its clients had been "truly remarkable".

"As soon as people heard about our plight we received incredibly generous offers of help and accommodation and they are still flooding in. It is this loyalty that is making us more determined than ever to move forward," he said.

Gladwin is currently fighting a battle with the landlords of his Just St James restaurant in central London over a massive increase to its rent and service charge payments.

The restaurant said its landlord, Legal & General, is demanding an annual increase of £75,000 in rental payments plus a new service charge of £50,000, up from an average of £3,000.

Just St James in dispute with landlord over huge rise in charges >>

Chef Peter Gladwin sells London restaurant >>

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By Kerstin Kühn

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