ALL SAINTS CHURCH KITCHEN
All Saints Church in Peckham provides the type of community support that is, sadly, rare these days. Although the regular congregation numbers a very respectable 350 or so, the church reaches a much wider number – well over 2000 – by being actively involved in the community. Members organise school events, garden clear ups, mentoring, reading help and so forth. In fact, word has spread so far and wide that Prince Charles himself recently made a personal visit to see how much the church has achieved.
As well as continuing with these commendable activities across the parish, the church committee also looked at the logistics of providing better facilities in the church hall itself. A decent and workable commercial catering facility that complied with all current legislation was clearly necessary and, via an architect’s recommendation, Nelson Catering Equipment was appointed, not only to install a new church kitchen in place of the old, primarily domestic, one, but to organise trades to address the other vital components of the transformation – primarily walls, flooring and lighting.
There is no designated cook amongst the 24 strong staff team, but one member with experience in school catering, together with Sally Hannon, the committee’s Financial and Operations Manager, took it upon themselves to work with Nelson.
“Although the church hall can hold up to 120 people, we were aware that most of the cooking would be on a smaller scale,” explains John Nelson. “Therefore, we produced a simple, yet versatile, commercial kitchen design that would adapt to all eventualities.”
There is a 6 burner oven range and a convection oven which, between them, provide options for different types, styles and volume of cooking. A water boiler ensures that a large amount of hot drinks can be made quickly and easily while a hot cupboard sited under the serving counter makes sure food is held without spoiling. There is also a commercial undercounter dishwasher and an upright fridge and freezer. Beyond this, there is a large amount of storage space and work surface, absolutely necessary when different groups of people use the church kitchen for various functions.
Forming a central island are 3 mobile base cupboards which can even be wheeled into the adjacent hall if required. “I am delighted with the way the kitchen has turned out,” says Sally. “A few of us are now in the process of embarking on a Health & Hygiene course and then we can increase our catering output and introduce more church events. It’s great to know that the new church kitchen will support us throughout.”