Stunning counters from Moffat provide centrepiece for refurbished schools’ new dining rooms
Red Maids School in Bristol is the oldest independent girls’ school in the country. With a history spanning nearly four centuries, the school has built a reputation as one of the best in the UK. The current building dates from the 1840s, and a comprehensive modernisation program was completed recently, including a complete refurbishment of the dining hall.
“The main building is 120 years old, and was obviously not originally designed as a modern school,” says bursar Peter Taylor. “We took the opportunity to change as much as possible to optimise the space for pupils and staff”.
In order to maximise the available space it became apparent that bespoke server counters would be required. “We had to create the design for the server counters long before the building to put them in was finished!” says Peter.
After a lengthy evaluation process, Moffat Catering Equipment won the contract. “We weren’t necessarily looking for the cheapest solution, but the ideas Moffat showed us represented good value for money and were excellent designs.”
As one of the UK’s leading food display equipment manufacturers, Moffat has unrivalled experience of creating dining server areas. Each layout is designed for optimum productivity and efficiency, while taking into account lifetime maintenance requirements and location-specific needs.
“There were many considerations to be taken into account – how to keep the flow of pupils moving smoothly, the number and placement of salad bars, hotplates, cutlery and so forth. Moffat provided continuous service at every step of the way”, says Peter.
The counter tops are made from white granite patterned with grey and black speckles. Deluxe heated quartz gantries keep heated food in perfect condition, while creating a visually attractive display. As well as staffed serving areas for hot foods, there are self-service salad bars and the “chef’s theatre”, which allows the girls to create their own servings of food such as Fajitas.
Debra Tabner of Chartwells Independent is the catering manager of Red Maids, and has witnessed the response to the new build. “The girls are overjoyed with it, and it’s a pleasure to work with.” As well as standard school catering, the dining room is regularly used for functions in the evening. “It’s very easy to turn it around for a buffet and drinks service,” says Debra, “it’s a much more flexible working area now, and the flow of people through the space is very smooth.”
With over half a century’s experience, Moffat has an unrivalled depth of experience of bespoke design projects. This experience helps when unforeseen events cause delays. “Parts of the refurbishment got pushed back a week,” Peter explains, “but Moffat’s engineers were able to work with the other contractors to ensure a perfect end result, even during the trickier parts of the install”.
“Everyone’s very happy with the counter,” says Debra, “it’s a top quality piece of design and it looks stunning!”