In the midst of an unprecedented crisis for the hospitality industry, many operators and their teams are taking positive and innovative actions to support those working in the sector as well as their local communities.
As well as covering the nationwide developments in relation to coronavirus, The Caterer will be showcasing these actions over the coming days and weeks, reminding us all what an amazing sector hospitality is. To share your efforts or messages to the industry, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Birmingham chefs team up to support good causes
Birmingham chefs Glynn Purnell, of Purnell's Restaurant, and Alex Claridge, of The Wilderness, will join comedians and performers for an online bash supporting Hospitality Action, the NHS and local artists.
Taking place on Sunday 12 April, the pair will take people through a step-by-step guide to prepare a meal to enjoy in their own homes., during the three-hour event. Glynn will take on the main course and a dessert, while Alex Claridge, will bring the cook-a-long to a close with dessert.
To find out more click here.
Itsu opens kitchens to cook for NHS workers
Following on from its donation of £15,000 worth of food to 20 NHS hospitals Itsu has opened the kitchens at its King’s Road and Regents Place branches, with the help of a team of volunteers, and delivered hundreds of hot Veggie Gyoza Udon meals to UCLH and Chelsea & Westminster hospitals.
These hospitals will now receive regular weekly deliveries from Itsu, with St Thomas’ and St Mary’s hospitals being added from this week. Meals will be entirely funded by Itsu and delivered by Deliveroo.
Itsu founder and CEO Julian Metcalfe said: “We’re so proud to say to hospital staff that dinner is on us. We’ve been working hard to source the best ingredients, have created a new recipe and have fantastic people who just want to help feed others."
With 500,000 hospitality workers expected to lose their job due to COVID-19, UKHospitality, jobs board Caterer.com and charity Hospitality Action have created a new jobs hub featuring thousands of short-term roles in other sectors.
The Hospitality Redeployment Hub, which has launche don Caterer.com, lists jobs at companies including Lidl, Superdrug, Amazon, Hermes and Co-op.
To see more go to www.caterer.com
Fooditude cooks for the vulnerable
Contract caterer Fooditude has re-opened its kitchen with a small group of volunteers to serve the vulnerable and self-isolating in Southwark, South London. On Friday (3 April) the team delivered their first 400 meals and are working to reach 2,000 a day.
Managing director, Dean Kennett, said: “Shutting our doors was heart-breaking let alone eerie. It felt like all the hard work everyone has put in to get our business where it is today was being thrown away. I knew I had to do something quickly to change that mindset and pouring our efforts into charity work seemed like the best way to do it.”
Chef-restaurateur Tom Kerridge and a group of volunteers from Marlow have raised over £100,000 in 48 hours to fund free meals for NHS workers and other groups in need. The project, titled Marlow Meals, has committed to 600 meals a day for six weeks but will now try to expand to 1,000 meals a day for a longer period. Kerridge has provided kitchen facilities and supervision while chefs are donating their time and effort to produce the meals daily.
Most of the meals will go to frontline NHS workers at nearby hospitals Wexham Park in Slough and Wycombe with other meals going to vulnerable people in Maidenhead, Marlow and surrounding villages.
Strand Palace providing free meals to ambulance services
The 785-bedroom Strand Palace hotel in London, is delivering free meals to the London Ambulance Service as part of the MealForce initiative, providing over 600 meals ambulance control rooms across the capital including Barking, Bow, Croydon and Waterloo.
St Albans chefs dig deep to help farmers
The St Albans Independent Hospitality and Retail Association have chefs and staff who are keen to ensure that farmers get help to harvest their crops for the season and keep the food supply chains operating.
Association representatives, Sean Hughes, who runs three pubs in the city, and Mandy McNeil have reached out to the National Farmers Union to offer support, saying: "Farmers, we are here and we are keen to do what we can to help."
Farmers in need of people to help can contact Save St Albans Pubs on Facebook @savestapubs Facebook group.
Help 4 Hospitality campaign
Berkmann Wine Cellars is giving the public access to its entire range online in a bid to raise funds for the hospitality industry.
Hospitality businesses can request a code from Berkmann, which they can share with their mailing list to give them all a 5% discount, with the wine cellars donating 12.5% of the total value of any orders amde using the code to the hospitality business that distributed it.
Any hospitality business can apply for a code by visiting email@example.com
Cakes for frontline workers
The husband and wife team behind Leicester-based Postive Bakes bakery is matching every purchase made with a like for like donation to frontline NHS workers.
The couple, who make allergen-free, plant-based-cakes said they hoped the gesture would be an "uplifting surprise treat during their long shifts".
Rooms for NHS workers
The St Pancras Hotel Group is offering rooms at its three London properties to NHS staff. Healthcare workers will be able to access rooms without reservations at the the Gyle, the California and the Megaro hotels, all in London's King's Cross.
Bagpipes in Crieff
The sound of bagpipes resonated through the village of Crieff last night as Crieff Hydro hotel's chief executive, Stephen Leckie and his sons, Richard and Charlie, performed a rendition of Highland Cathedral to offer their thanks to all the NHS staff and carers at this difficult time.
The RAF Club provides accommodation to key workers
The Royal Air Force Club, a historic private members’ club in London’s Mayfair, is providing accommodation to the military, government and other key workers tackling Covid-19, many of whom have been assisting with the building and logistics in opening the new Nightingale Hospital at London’s Excel Centre. The club has also committed to three months’ full pay for all full-time staff.
Whitbread donates 27 tonnes of food
Whitbread, which operates Premier Inn hotels and restaurant brands including Beefeater, Brewers Fayre and Table Table, has donated more than 27 tonnes of food to charity.
The food, which has been diverted as a result of the closure of its restaurants, is enough to provide 64,387 meals, most of which will be redistributed through food redistribution charity FareShare’s nationwide network of frontline charities as they work to support those most vulnerable through the coronavirus crisis, including schools, food banks, care homes and homeless shelters.
The donations include approximately 9,800 tomatoes, 2,100 potatoes, 4,000 bananas and 15,500 pints of milk, with more items to be donated in the coming week.
Rockliffe Hall donates toiletries
The five-red-AA-star, 61-bedroom Rockliffe Hall hotel in Hulworth, near Darlington, has gifted 576 shower gels to Darlington Memorial Hospital after a message went out asking for products for patients who don’t have any toiletries due to the current ban on visitors.
The Initiative launches grocery service
The Initiative, which owns and operates six sites in the UK, has turned its Deli Cat & Sons site in London’s Broken Wharf into a food and drink delivery service and online grocery. The employees from the closed sites have been retained and are working to fulfil the orders for takeaway, delivery and the online grocery store, and further staff have been recruited from the industry to help.
As well as distributing 500 survival packs a week to those who have registered and need it most, the venue is also putting £1 from every order towards a food bank help those who have been left struggling and unemployed in the hospitality industry.
Loch Lomond distiller creates hand sanitiser
Independent distiller the Loch Lomond Group has produced several thousand bottles of hand sanitiser. The group has partnered with Fareshare Scotland, which will ensure distribution to those who need it most, and thousands more have been committed to more than 150 organisations including healthcare and frontline services.
Publican delivers free meals to NHS staff
Publican Eduardo Dantas of Ei Group’s Tia Maria bar and restaurant in London’s South Lambeth is preparing and delivering up to 60 freshly cooked meals each day to NHS staff working at King’s College hospital. Dantas has been paying for, preparing and delivering the meals himself, and now donations are being received towards his continued work.
Farnborough chefs cook for the NHS
Mark Walshaw, a senior head chef for foodservice firm Amadeus, and his next-door neighbour Gavin Roche, who also works as a chef in Farnborough, teamed up to provide meals for NHS staff at their local Frimley Park hospital.
Walshaw sourced produce from Amadeus’ base at Farnborough International Exhibition and Conference Centre, including vegetables, couscous and rice, that would have otherwise gone to waste due to the rescheduling of events at the venue. Roche then cooked up the ingredients at home before delivering more than 50 batches of couscous curry to the hospital as a treat for hard-working staff.
Chester restaurateurs feed the homeless
Independent Chester restaurants, including Gary Usher's Sticky Walnut, Chef's Table and Joseph Benjamin, are taking it in turns to provide meals for Soul Kitchen Chester, which provides hot food and drinks, clothing, shower facilities and support to those that are homeless or struggling financially in the area.
Signature Dining hands out essential ingredients
Caterer Signature Dining, part of the Genuine Dining Co, has been preparing boxes of essential ingredients from its stock, which are being handed out to carers.
The Torridon launches bespoke programme for staff
In addition to continuing to provide complimentary accommodation and F&B to the 15 members of the team still living at the five-AA-star, 18-bedroom Torridon hotel during the national lockdown, owners Dan and Rohaise Rose-Bristow, who also live onsite, have designed a bespoke programme for the ‘Torridon household’.
Utilising the time created from the temporary closure of the Scottish Highlands hotel to upskill and maintain the team’s morale, a training and development plan has been developed, including hospitality management courses, foreign language courses, resilience training and F&B courses.
Activities such as group hiking, the ‘Torridon Olympics’, running club and helping out with the maintenance of the kitchen garden and Torridon farm have been taking place throughout the week.
Rhug Estate donates surplus stock
Lord Newborough, owner of the Rhug Estate in Corwen, Denbighshire, donated surplus stock to Hope House Hospice in Oswestry. Cakes, bread, milk and eggs were delivered to the children’s hospice from the organic farm, café and shop, which has closed its bistro and takeaway but is still operating its farm shop and drive-through.
Camden Brewery launches virtual pub
Camden Town Brewery has launched the Camden Bre.www.ery bar, a virtual pub in partnership with Hospitality Action to help raise money for the charity’s Covid-19 emergency fund.
The brewery is organising a programme of entertainment over the coming weeks, from pub quizzes to live music. During each event, there will be a ‘digital tip jar’ on JustGiving to raise money for Hospitality Action, as well as a donation mechanic live on Camden’s web shop.
Yard Sale Pizza launch fund to feed NHS workers
The Yard Sale Pizza team has been making delicious drop offs to its local London hospitals - Homerton, Whipps Cross, and the Royal London. The group has set itself the aim of feeding 5,000 NHS staff in the coming weeks and has asked for donations to support its efforts - with £10,000 raised since Friday alone.
The donation page can be found here: https://yardsalepizza.com/merch/
Honest Burger teams up with City Harvest
Honest Burgers has teamed up with London charity City Harvest to deliver thousands of cottage pies and lasagnes to the vulnerable. Honest Burgers founders and staff worked overnight to turn all of the leftover steak in their Sutton-based butchery into the nourishing meals, which were delivered to the vulnerable by City Harvest.
Wasabi donates 500 meals a day to NHS workers
Japanese-style food chain Wasabi is donating 500 free home bentos meals a day to NHS workers for as long as they can. If you'd like to suggest a London hospital or frontline worker to send them to please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last Monday it closed all its stores, its drivers collected all the surplus food from their kitchens, including 500kg of fresh salmon that went straight to food charity City Harvest which it then distributed in just three days to the elderly and vulnerable. City Harvest works closely with the hospitality and food industries ensuring no food goes to waste. You can donate to City Harvest here.
Mildred’s restaurants makes 400 meals a week for NHS staff
Independent vegetarian and vegan restaurant group Mildred’s has committed to delivering 400 meals every week to four London hospitals to support NHS frontline staff caring for coronavirus patients. On Tuesday (24 March) the Dalston site made meals and dessert and delivered it to Whipps Cross and Whittington Hospital staff. Yesterday (25 March) it made vegan curry and vegan spaghetti bolognese meals for Barnet and Whitechapel hospitals.
Sam Anstey the managing director of Mildred’s has set up a crowdfunder to raise £5,000 to continue supporting the NHS staff, over £4,600 has been raised. You can make a donation here.
Damian Wawrzyniak offers to bake free sourdough for local NHS
Damian Wawrzyniak is the chef owner of Polish restaurant House of Feasts. Since shutting its doors he has been baking and selling 70 to 80 loaves of bread per day and making bread donations to his local NHS hospitals.
He has set up a crowdfunder to raise £4000 for a professional planetary mixer so he produce 200 - 300 loaves a day. You can donate to it here.
Foodspeed donates dairy produce to the NHS
Foodspeed a supplier of fresh milk and dairy products to the hotel, restaurant and catering trade in London will donate as much of its surplus stock and ingredients to NHS hospitals.
It can deliver to hospitals across London. Please contact them for remaining stock here.
TakeawayToday can help hospitality businesses serve takeaway safely
TakeawayToday is a new platform to help pubs, restaurants and cafes pivot to a takeaway food business safely and efficiently by removing the need for close interaction. Made by Crave a British hospitality technology company. Its CEO Gareth Hughes said: “With the COVID-19 crisis, our communities need feeding at home, including more takeaway and delivery food options.” Find out more here.
Simon Boyle charity gives out 3,500 meals
Chef entrepreneur Simon Boyle’s social enterprise restaurant Brigade Food and Bar and charity Beyond Food Foundation has distributed over 3,500 meals to charity and vulnerable people. Beneficiaries have included the homeless, Veterans Aid, Age UK, St Mungos, Pecan Food Bank, NHS staff, City Harvest and White Chapel Mission.
Following the government shutdown of restaurants he plans to continue support for shelters, hostels and food banks by connecting them remotely with food manufacturers and businesses with surplus and unused food. He has set up a crowdfunder to raise £50,000. You can make donations here.
Alchemilla Restaurant offers free meals to frontline NHS staff
Alex Bond the chef-proprietor of Michelin-starred Alchemilla in Nottingham will be offering free meals for all NHS frontline staff.
They can be collected from the restaurant with a valid NHS card between 12pm and 3pm on Tuesdays and 10am and 3pm on Fridays starting the 31 March. Contact Alchemilla here.
NEC Group and event organisers donate food to local good causes
Two event organisers in partnership with NEC Group venues have donated their event food to good causes.
Tropic Skincare donated all fresh food due to be consumed at their bi-annual event at the NEC to Real Junk Food Project Birmingham which takes food that is going to waste and produces healthy, meals for all on a ‘Pay-As-You-Feel’ basis. For more information about Real Junk Food Project Birmingham, please visit here.
Whilst BCS the Chartered Institute for IT donated 250 lunches due to be provided to delegates of their Skills for a Digital World 2020 event at the ICC, to Lozells Methodist Community Centre which receives food donations and distributes them to the local homeless community. Carlton Connell the operations director at Tropic Skincare, requested aaid: “It’s great that something positive can come out of such a sad situation. The NEC team were excellent and supportive in making donation arrangements.” For more information about Lozells Methodist Community Centre, please visit here.
The Corona Care Challenge has raised £32,000 of £100,000 goal to make care packages
The Landesberg Family behind the Arts Club, AOK Kitchen and JAB have set up a crowdfunding page with the goal of raising £100,000 for the production of care packages to be delivered to people in need. The Corona Care Challenge has already raised an incredible £32,000.
They are helping the elderly, single parents, those with disabilities, high risk people and NHS staff in multiple hospitals across the capital. Care packages include non-perishable goods; tins, pasta, rice jams to fresh fruit and vegetables, dairy produce as well as household essentials like; laundry detergents, toilet roll, cleaning product & toiletries and baby formula. You can support the fundraising drive here.
LabTech offers 10 apartments to emergency services and the vulnerable
LabTech the property and investment firm that owns Camden Market has announced a series of initiatives to aid the emergency services and vulnerable during the coronavirus outbreak.
These include complimentary stay at 10 of its apartments from its estate for NHS workers and their families, the elderly and people at high risk of eviction. Use of the Camden House events space for emergency services to use during breaks with free hot drinks and breakfast.
Additionally, Camden House is providing rooms to Camden Kitchen three days a week to provide them with a space to cook for the increasing numbers of homeless.
LabTech’s CEO Yaron Shahar said: “London is facing a unique challenge and we all have a responsibility to do what we can to help.”
Gails Bakery gives out bread deliveries at the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity
NHS workers at leading cancer hospital the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity in London reported there wasn’t any bread left in shops when finishing their shifts, so Gails Bakery stepped in to give out freshly made loaves. You can donate to the hospital here.
James Sommerin makes huge food drop to NHS Cardiff & Vale workers
Michelin-starred chef James Sommerin made a huge food drop from his James Sommerin Restaurant to NHS staff at Cardiff & Vale UHB. Emergency nurse Emily Davies wrote: “Lots of happy faces around the hospital! We are all very grateful for your kindness and generosity at this time, it means more to us than you will ever know.” You can donate to the hospital here.
Sandy Mount House donates to local Welsh foodbank
Adam Jackson cooks up meals from Feversham Arms Helmsley for York NHS
The executive and head chef of the Feversham Arms Helmsley Adam Jackson and his team made what was left in their fridge; lamb, pasta and crumble and served it up in containers for frontline NHS workers at York District Hospital.
The Athenian Greek street food gives all staff a weekly care package
Greek street food restaurant the Athenian is taking measures to protect the wellbeing of its staff. It will now be giving a weekly parcel of basic necessities, including feta pastry, lentils, tomatoes, tomato paste, pasta, olive oil, lettuce, and toilet roll, in order to make sure that the ‘Athenians’ get their basic needs covered.
It also plans to open several new delivery-only kitchens with Deliveroo Editions, both in and out of London. This will allow it to trade online only, keep staff in work as it wants to maintain company morale. You can order online from them here.
Itsu donates £15,000 worth of free meals to the NHS
Prior to closing its Asian-food restaurants, Itsu staff across the country spent their last day of work making boxes of sushi and salad. They produced over £15,000 of free meals for hospitals including the intensive care units at UCLH, University Hospital Lewisham & Ealing Hospital, North Manchester General and many more. They were supported with produce from The Meatless Farm. What a fantastic job!
Cutter & Squidge moves sweet treats store online - gives 30% discount for NHS staff
Founded by sisters Annabel and Emily Lui, luxury bakery firm Cutter and Squidge specialises in sweet treats and ‘biskies’ part cake, part biscuits.
Whilst it has temporarily closed both its stores it has moved all its operations online. There is a £9 price for any delivery within the M25. There is free Easter egg ship nationwide and its offering 30% off everything to NHS staff. Find out more here.
Bespoke Hotels’ Oddfellows in Chester arranges afternoon tea for nursing home
The largest independent hotel group Bespoke Hotels has issued an imperative for properties to support those most in need in their regions with all hotels reviewing their processes. Select Bespoke Hotels have now begun redistributing food supplies.
Oddfellows Chester organised an afternoon tea for the local care home. A spokesperson wrote on their Facebook page: “Today we are delighted to help the local care home and hopefully put smiles on faces with afternoon tea for all!!”
Cotswold House helped arrange an afternoon tea using surplus foods at the Campden Nursing Home; it donated perishable vegetables to locals who are sick or undergoing hospital treatments at home, as well as to local shelter house for vulnerable adults and a local school.
Hospitality Workers Emergency Fund launched for staff on zero-hours contracts
Hospitality Action and TipJar have have launched the Hospitality Workers Emergency Fund to help UK hospitality workers who will lose their zero-hour contracts during the coronavirus outbreak, affecting their ability to pay rent, bills, feed themselves or their families.
People can donate directly to hospitality workers via the TipJar tipping app and 100% of the donations will go to charity Hospitality Action to distribute. You can donate here.
If you have been affected you can apply for a grant here.
Great Food Club launches map of food delivery services
Great Food Club of Leicestershire has responded to the coronavirus outbreak by launching a website that enables you to locate more than 90 independent food and drink providers in the East Midlands who are offering a delivery service. The map includes farm shops offering fresh fruit, meat and vegetables, butchers, producers, wine shops, restaurants and pubs. Great Food Club founder Matt Wright said: "It's vital we all stay at home as much as possible to support the NHS and reduce the spread of this virus. This map allows more people to stay put.” To view the constantly updated map visit the website here.
Great Food Club has also launched a click-and-collect map listing independents offering a contactless takeaway service. You can view it here.
City Harvest collects food to give to other charities
City Harvest is a London based charity which collects surplus food and puts it to use in a good and sustainable way. Nutritious food comes from all segments of the food industry including restaurants, grocers, manufacturers, wholesalers, hotels and caterers. They work round the clock to get as much food out to those in need but also helping all the chefs clear down their sites as they close.
Their biggest drive at the moment is funding so they can keep their employees paid for as long as possible. They are currently looking for more volunteers to help pack the surplus food and distribute it to organisations . and more details can be found on their website. Go to the website for more details and to donate any amount you can afford here.
Simon Huston gives out fruit and veg boxes
Simon Huston co-director of independent foodservice company Houston & Hawkes has given out over 50 fruit and veg boxes to his friends and family across south London. He said it’s: “My way of paying back the support we’ve had from so many of our amazing suppliers over the years.”
Black Bull and Three Hares Cafe now offer takeaway meals and drinks
James Ratcliffe and Nina Matsunaga’s Black Bull coaching inn and Three Hares Café in Sedbergh, Yorkshire, are creating a takeaway menu as well as offering takeout beer and wine
Food hampers given to staff working at Robin Gill’s restaurants Staff working at Robin Gill's restaurants are given complementary food hampers
Andrew Nutter runs online isolation kitchen cook-along
Andrew Nutter, founder of Nutters Restaurant in Rochdale, has been running an isolation Kitchen cook-along, with an online tutorial in how to prepare a main course, dessert and bottle of wine using ingredients sold from the restaurant.
Small Holding opens farm shop offering local produce
The Small Holding in Kent has transformed itself into a farm shop, offering hampers of local produce, three-course takeaway meals, and vegetables from the small holding plot
Matt Healy launches fundraiser to feed 500 NHS staff Sunday roast
Chef-restauranteur Matt Healy, a 2016 MasterChef: The Professionals finalist, has launched a fundraiser to feed NHS staff a Sunday roast at his Matt Healy x The Foundry restaurant in Leeds.
The initial £1000 funds target was met within an hour. He has, so-far, raised over £1,500 of his new £2,000 target which could mean he is able to feed 500 NHS workers his roast voted 'Britain’s Best' in a poll by food giant Unilever.
Additionally, on Sunday (23 March) he donated meals and flowers to NHS staff at the High Dependency Unit Bexley Wing at St James’ Hospital in Leeds. To donate to the Go Fund Me page go here.
Leon donates to Oxford food banks
Healthy fast food brand Leon in Oxford donated on Saturday (21 March) 380kg of beans, 174 tubs of hummus and 360 cases of fresh juice to the elderly, isolated and those using food banks. It received manpower and distribution support from Sofea and Oxford Hub.
Yummy Pubs owner and 66 staff offer to volunteer to support the NHS
Following the government’s pledge to cover 80% of wages for three months Tim Foster, co-owner of the Yummy Pub Co tweeted “I made a promise this morning that if Rishi & Boris delivered today I would volunteer to work for NHS England for FREE until this was over. Offer still stands. What has changed, is that 66 of my Yummy Pubs team have done so too. Where do you want us chaps?”
If you know anyone Tim or his team of 66 can support call 01342 832263 or message Foster @YummyTim via twitter.
Rosa’s Thai Cafe cooks for the Intensive Care and Lungs Unit at NHS Homerton
Rosa’s Thai Cafe in Hackney, specialists in authentic Thai cuisine, have cooked up a storm for the Intensive Care and Lungs unit at NHS Homerton in Hackney. It has pledged: “We'll be keeping the team fed for the foreseeable future as they carry out their life saving work.”
James Cochran feeds his local fire brigade following supermarket sellouts
Chef restauranteur James Cochran discovered his local fire brigade were unable to buy any food because all the supermarkets had sold out. In a video posted to Instagram he reveals he supplied the fire crew with goods from his Islington-based restaurant 12:51. He said: “a little thank you 12:51 re going to be giving them a whole load of freebies so they’ve got a lot on their plate to eat.
12:51 is now offering a personal delivery service to anyone in the N1 post code. Over 50’s, pregnant, disabled people that are self isolating will take priority. Call 07934203269 or email email@example.com and for everyone else we are on Deliveroo and Slerp. Find out more on the 12:51 Facebook page here.
Diageo pledges to donate key ingredient for eight million bottles of sanitiser to help frontline health workers worldwide
Leading alcoholic beverage brand Diageo has pledged to donate the key ingredient for eight million bottles of sanitiser to protect frontline healthcare workers to overcome a worldwide shortfall following the coronavirus crisis.
The firm behind Smirnoff and Johnnie Walker will donate two million litres of Grain Neutral Spirit (GNS) a 96% strength ethyl alcohol used primarily in the production of vodka and gin to hand sanitiser producers in multiple countries at no cost. This will enable the production of more than eight million 250ml bottles of hand sanitiser.
Diageo chief executive Ivan Menezes said “Healthcare workers are at the forefront of fighting this pandemic and we are determined to do what we can to help protect them. This is the quickest and most effective way for us to meet the surging demand for hand sanitiser around the world.”
500,000 litres are earmarked for the UK and the Republic of Ireland.
Relish Events’ staff offer a helping hand with cooking
Following Relish Events’ closure of its operated café venues to comply with government guidelines on distancing it is looking to deploy its out of work staff to companies and organisations struggling due to the coronavirus outbreak. It also has a production kitchen it is willing to offer the use of.
Co-director Rob Goves said: “We have teams of chefs and staff that could work in the private or public sector. Care homes, retirement villages, the NHS and other care charities and companies may be swamped.” For more information please contact Relish Event Catering on 01285 658444 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chester Race Company to offer free frozen meals for emergency front-line workers
From 25 March Chester Race Company will be be supporting frontline NHS workers and emergency services staff dealing directly with the covid-19 crisis, by offering them a free ready-cooked frozen meal.
Available for collection from Chester Racecourse, on production of their NHS or emergency services ID, staff can collect a free freshly prepared frozen meal, ready to take home and pop in the oven or microwave. Workers can choose from a menu including Lasagne, Shepherd’s pie, Thai vegetable curry, fish pie and Mediterranean pesto chicken. The collection point will be open between the hours of 9am – 9pm.
A Just Giving page has been set up to raise funds towards the ongoing production of meals. If you would like to donate to support this worthy cause, please visit here.
Cardiff restaurant owner Giovanni Malacrino donates pizza and pasta
Cardiff restaurant owner Giovanni Malacrino is giving away pizza and pasta to the most vulnerable people hit by the Coronavirus. His three Giovanni's restaurants, on the Hayes, Park Place and Cardiff Bay are currently open for deliveries, and the 59-year-old said he wanted to help NHS workers, the elderly and anyone else who is in need as much of the country stays at home in self-isolation.
He said: “At the moment, we can donate around 500 meals over the next few weeks, like a pasta dish or a pizza, for people to heat up at home or in their workplace.” If you are or know of anyone vulnerable in Cardiff who needs food and is unable to pay, send a Facebook message to Giovanni’s Restaurant Cardiff here.
Albrighton Hall Hotel offers rooms for office space
The Albrighton Hotel and Spa is a 16th century manor house in Shropshire. It is offering its empty rooms at special rates for use as office space for those who want to work in isolation but who would find it very hard to work from their home.
A private room with work desk and ensuite bathroom can be hired for between 8.30am and 5pm. Rooms cost £8 per hour or £50 for eight hours. Find out more here.
Paul Bakery to open the Bread Market - free hot drinks for NHS professionals
On 23 March French artisan bakery Paul will open the Bread Market from its central bakery in Acton to meet increasing consumer demand for fresh bread during the current crisis and to help alleviate the pressure on supermarkets.
It will be open daily and there will be ‘buy one get one free’ on all 400g and 800g loaves on online delivery orders, in-store and bought direct from the Bread Market. Same day delivery is also available via UberEats.
To support NHS staff on the frontline against coronavirus Paul is offering free tea and coffee to all UK health professionals. The bakery also donates unsold food to London based charity, the Felix Project on a daily basis to help feed the people who need it. Learn more here.
Gaucho and M Restaurants launch home delivery service - 50% off for emergency workers
Gaucho and M Restaurants have launched a premium home delivery service for people unable or unwilling to dine out. On offer is a selection of choices from their menu cooked in the restaurant before being dropped to your door, wine can also be included. Deliveries will arrive within half an hour of being ordered and will be brought by restaurant staff on foot, with the option of no contact if required.
Additionally, emergency services staff workers will receive 50% off on all orders for collection.
Qoot gives out free lunchboxes to children eligible for free school meals
Qoot the food and drinks brand behind coffee chain the Gentleman Baristas has pledged to offer complimentary lunches to school children eligible for free schools meals but who are unable to attend following school closures.
Any child who shows their benefit documentation will receive a lunch box comprising of a sandwich, drink and a snack. Can be collected from open branches of Chloe, the Lebanese Bakery, Dominique Ansel and the Gentleman Baristas.
Piano Works virtual visit - watch a live gig online
The Piano Works in Farringdon and London’s West End are closed until further government advice is issued. However it has announced it will be streaming live music tonight (20 March) and Saturday night from 8pm via their Facebook page, encouraging customers who are staying indoors to “turn the music up and escape with four hours of non-stop live music streaming” into people's homes. Tune into the Friday gig here. Make a donation to the performers here.
Coffee shop converted into general store to support the isolated
Cookbook author Romilla Arber owner of the community-driven Honesty Group food company, has converted her coffee shop into a general store to support the vulnerable. Located in Inkpen, Berkshire it now sells groceries and household goods with the express purpose of delivering to the elderly and those in isolation. Find out more here.
Dine with Lime - hospitality recruitment firm cooks meals for home delivery
Following the coronavirus outbreak Lime Recruit, specialists in hospitality recruitment, has seen all its business disappear overnight. Instead of closing down it has decided to temporarily change what it does to continue trading and keep its staff in employment - it will now cook meals for home delivery and collection.
It has secured a commercial kitchen. Chef consultant Duncan was Marcus Waering’s sous chef and Dominic was head chef at Earl’s Court exhibition centre. Lime Recruit staff has supported the Helping Hands charity in Leamington for months by helping in their kitchens and and will continue to support them now by making a donation to the Helping Hands charity from every meal sold. Find out more here.
Football legends give 176 hotel beds to NHS workers
Retired-footballers Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs co-owners of Hotel Football and the Stock Exchange Hotel are to close them to the public from today (20 March) so they can offer their 176 beds to NHS workers and medical professionals. The rooms will be free of charge and the staff will operate the hotels as normal.
The rooms will be earmarked for NHS health workers who need to be away from any family in isolation. Explaining why they are doing this Neville said: “The whole of our industry needs to show solidarity not just for our staff in these uncertain times but for the people who need the accommodation most in the coming months.”
The Tap & Run converts restaurant section to an ‘old village shop’
In the new industry climate Stuart Broad has been making changes at his pub the Tap & Run in Upper Broughton. He is converting part of the dining area back to its former glory as a village shop which should be ready to open this weekend.
It will sell dairy products, chilled meals, bakery products, dry store products, fruit and veg, confectionary and pre-prepared meals that customers can take home and heat up themselves. There is a delivery service which will be free to over 70s and NHS workers within a certain radius.
Andrew Wong and Kimberly Hernandez make at-home meals for the elderly and vulnerable
Michelin starred chef Andrew Wong is working to create at-home meals for elderly and vulnerable members of the local community aided by Kimberly Hernandez, Head Chef at Kym’s. The means they produce will be packaged and hand delivered free of charge – left on the doorstep for those self isolating - ready to be heated up at home. The initiative is currently being organised through his local parish church - St Peters in Eaton Square, London . Wong’s initiative is helping to keep his staff busy and motivated whilst also supporting his surrounding community.
Loyal Tavern London donating grocery boxes to elderly
Tom Cenci the chef patron of the Loyal Tavern London will be operating his restaurant as a grocery store and deli with all the basics including egg, pasta, rice and toilet paper fresh vegetables, charcuterie, and wine to support the local community.
He will also be donating grocery boxes to the elderly, if you need or know anyone that needs help please get in touch here.
Chester Race Course organises foodbank drop off
Today (March 20) Chester Race Course has opened a food bank drop off site at the Holiday Inn Express at Chester Racecourse and to kick off donations has donated £1000 worth of food items to help those in need.
Chocolates for hospital staff
Boutique chocolate house Pierre Marcolini has delivered a large stock of chocolates, delicacies, pastries and seasonal creations for Easter to hospitals in London, Paris and Brussels to support hospital staff and caregivers who are mobilised in the fight against COVID-19.
Feed It Back Academy free webinar for operators on how to handle the coronavirus crisis
Feed It Back Academy is launching a free webinar series on Monday 23 March to support operators during the corona crisis with Academy Trainers Karen Turton and Mark McCulloch
The operations-focused course, led by Karen, will focus on cleaning protocol, processes and how to engage employees and reignite business after the crisis has passed. Mark McCulloch, leading the marketing course, highlights what businesses can do in the here and now to drive footfall and the reputation of their businesses, ranging from guidance on what content to use across social channels, to articulating the wider purpose of the business by engaging and supporting the local community. Find out more here.
Conker gin make and give away sanitisers for the community
Dorset-based gin distillery Conker are making and bottling sanitisers from the waste 'heads' of their gin production and, as well as distributing them to their wine shops, bars and restaurants, are currently working on producing them for the wider community, particularity the most vulnerable who desperately need it - care homes, community workers and the elderly. They are not profiting from this and are currently discussing with HMRC about removing the spirits duty.
Flamenco pub owner Alex Clayton provides pick and mix care cleaning and shopping care packages
Alex Clayton, owner of Spanish restaurants Flamenco and Tasca Dali in Warwick, is launching pick and mix-style care packages, including cleaning and food shopping services designed to support the elderly and vulnerable who are being asked to self-isolate for three months. Vulnerable members of society can also order weekly cleans as well as a free grocery shopping delivery and an additional 10% discount is being offered on any orders for the over 70s and for NHS staff.
Women On Wheels
The founders of Pomelo, the modern British tapas restaurant, Natasha Cooke and Lucy Pedder have set up an all-day delivery service.
They offer homemade hearty meals designed to be frozen and fresh fruit, veg, milk, juices and other groceries which they are still receiving from their suppliers but do not want to go to waste. Many of the mainly women team deliver on mopeds.
Michelin-starred chef Roger Jones delivers free meals to community
Roger Jones the chef-proprietor of the Harrow at Little Bedwyn has been giving out free meals to the vulnerable in his community. Meals included lamb casserole, monkfish with wild mushrooms and vegetarian curry.
He retires at the end of March but plans to keep offer a food service to those who need throughout the summer.
Chefbay needs chefs to host live cookery sessions
Chefbay is a food lovers’ community where members can view the culinary newsfeed, the recipe feed and participate on the forums.It also gives chefs a platform to find employment and their very own audience by uploading videos of themselves cooking recipes that they personally enjoy.
Chefbay is looking for bold chefs that can host live video cooking sessions for people at home who want to learn how to cook. They pay a minimum of fifty pounds for one to two hours work. Contact them here.
Oakman Inns now offering collection and delivery service
Independent pub group Oakman Inns now offers a collection service so customers can take away meals including wood-fired pizzas, vegan dishes, grilled fish and a selection of beers and wines.
It is also launching a new in-house local delivery service for pub locals who are unable to leave their homes and to help self-isolators or anybody else who wants quality pub food delivered to their door.
Chefs back Hospitality Action
Chefs including Tom Kerridge, Tom Brown and Ellis Barrie have all appealed for people to donate to Hospitality Action's emergency relief fund, which will support those affected by coronavirus across the industry. With many hospitality workers facing a reduction in hours or a complete loss of income, the charity is asking those who can to give their support. To make a donation click here.
Market sets up hospitality help centre
Liverpool's Duke Street food and drink market has opened its foyer today as a drop-off point for donated goods. With a million jobs at risk in the sector, the market is asking the city's residents to leave non-perishable goods in the foyer, in order to redistribute them to those who have been affected by the virus. Matt Farrell, one of the market’s directors, said: "We want to do all that we can to support people within the hospitality industry who may be struggling during this time."
BrewDog gives distillery over to efforts
Brewer and pub company BrewDog has started to make hand sanitiser at its distillery in Scotland to help with shortages. The company said: "We are determined to do everything we can to try and help as many people as possible stay safe." The firm says it will give the sanitiser away to local communities and charities rather than sell it. Find out more here.
Chestnut pubs offer takeaway service and free soup to vulnerable locals in East-Anglia
East-Anglia based pub group Chestnut is launching a new takeaway menu to support its customers and local communities, to the best of its abilities. Customers can order a take-away either for themselves, their family members or vulnerable neighbours. Currently customers can collect the food from eight of the eleven Chestnut properties with the others to follow.
Additionally, the Black Lion is able to offer free hot vegetable soup to vulnerable locals that may not be able to leave their house.
Greene King introduces ‘takeaway pub’ for self-isolators
Pub chain giant Greene King is introducing a takeaway service to its customers to provide traditional pub meals for people who are social distancing due to coronavirus.The service will start with 50 Greene King and Hungry Horse pubs by the end of the week and the intention is to increase it to 500 over the coming weeks.
The takeaway menu will include favourite pub classics such as fish and chips, steak and ale pie, burger and chips, as well as a range of bottled beer, wine and soft drinks.
Hogs Back Brewery offers drive-through beer
Surrey-based Hogs Back Brewery has introduced a new Drive Through service for its draught, bottled and canned beers. Customers simply drive up to the Brewery Shop, place their order - from a safe distance - and the beer is loaded into their boot by shop staff, without needing to leave their car.
Customers can also ‘click and collect' by going online to www.hogsback.co.uk with orders ready for collection after 10.00 am the next day, and for those waiting for orders, beer will be served to socially-distanced tables in the open canopy area. For customers unable to leave home, Hogs Back will home-deliver orders within a 15-mile radius of the brewery, and further afield for orders of £40 or more.
The Oddfellows offers Sunday roast SIX days a week
The Oddfellows is offering its Sunday roast menu for delivery from Tuesdays to Sundays via Deliveroo. Owner Faye Williams said: “We are providing a service that will hopefully boost the cities’ mood during this very strange time and also for those who may be caring for sick family and may not have time to cook nourishing meals.”
It also offers veggie and vegan roasts and caters for intolerances and special dietary requirements. Beer, wine and even cocktails can be delivered to enjoy with the meals.