Catering Equipment: Moffat Food Servery Self Service Counters for School Foodservice

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New servery counters at Bryanston School, supplied by Moffat, have radically improved foodservice and delivered a highly flexible catering solution.

Bryanston in Dorset is one of the UK’s top independent schools. It has recently invested in a major upgrade of its catering facilities. The school motto, et nova et vetera, the new and the old, refers to a commitment to combining the best of traditional and progressive educational philosophy. It equally applies to the new catering facilities, which combine the latest food servery technology and modern design concepts with a sympathetic yet strikingly modern refurbishment of the Grade 1 building’s historic architectural features.

Central to the whole project is a series of highly versatile servery counters, both static and mobile, designed and built by British manufacturer E & R Moffat. The counters feature satin stainless steel construction with Zodiac work tops, their shades of grey matching the contemporary style of the interior decor.    

“The old catering facility had five different entries and four different server positions,” explains Jon Mortimer, Estates Bursar at Bryanston. “We could seat just over 300 but it was cramped. Mealtimes felt like being in the middle of Waterloo station in rush hour!”

Since the restaurant caters for 670 pupils and 400 staff, and there’s limited time to serve most of them lunch, things had to change. “On the one hand we needed to exploit the latest thinking in terms of traffic flow, on the other we wanted to keep the building’s historic elements and, indeed, restore some that had been lost.”

The new facility has one entrance, one servery area and seats over 400 in comfort. It gives much better control and throughput is fast. There are three interconnected dining areas, each with its own ambience. The main diner, which also houses the servery area, is Kitchen Court, seating about 300. The Gun Room seats 32 and the Old Boiler Room about 73.    

“The design of the counters is critical to the success of the scheme,” says Jon Mortimer. “They give us enormous flexibility, which is very important because we change the menu regularly and the servery area has to be able to adapt.”

The static counters are sited around the outside of the servery area. They are designed to accept a variety of drop-in units – hot wells, cold wells, cooking stations and so on – which can easily be changed to match the menu’s requirements. Meanwhile the various mobile units can be quickly moved to whatever position best suits the menu’s traffic flow. If the space is needed for something else, they can be wheeled away and stored elsewhere.

In a typical lunch service separate counters will be set up for serving, for example, three hot main courses, soup, salad, jacket potatoes, vegetables and, of course, puddings. There’s also a ‘chef’s theatre’ counter, for freshly prepared meals such as stir fry or omelette.

“The servery area’s layout, and the ability to change it, for example by opening or shutting different serving points, means we can manage the traffic flow, to speed up throughput and cut out bottle necks,” says Jon Mortimer.    

E & R Moffat is one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of quality foodservice equipment, designing and manufacturing in-house. Based in Bonnybridge, Scotland, the company manufactures standard and bespoke servery, regeneration and storage equipment with a full nationwide after-sales engineering team. E & R Moffat is accredited to ISO 9001:2008 and many of the products have gas approvals and are EMC tested. For more information on E & R Moffat visit the website on http://www.ermoffat.co.uk

Bryanston is an independent boarding and day school for boys and girls aged 13 to 18, set in a 400-acre site near Blandford in Dorset. Founded in 1928, the school aims above all to develop the all-round talents of individual pupils. A broad, flexible academic and extra-curricular programme is offered and each pupil receives considerable one-to-one help and guidance from a personal tutor, subject teachers and housemaster/housemistress. For more information go to http://www.bryanston.co.uk

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Toni Turner
E & R Moffat
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