Catering Services in the House of Commons

Written evidence submitted by Deborah Lewis, Parliamentary Section, Department for Education

The Department for Education currently provides restaurant facilities to its four headquarter sites in Darlington, London, Runcorn and Sheffield. This is provided via a contracted service by Autograph – the food people, which is part of the Rentokill Initial Group. It comprises:

· A paid hospitality service for business meetings, which is provided to all four sites including hot and cold drinks (tea, coffee and tap water), and working lunches (normally sandwiches, quiche and mini sausages). Special dietary requirements are also catered for;

· The staff catering facility in Darlington and Runcorn includes a limited selection of hot meals, soup, self service coffee and snack vending;

· The staff catering facility in London includes a selection of hot meals, soups, a salad bar, a deli counter, ready made sandwiches, a Costa Coffee provision and snack vending

· The staff catering provision in Sheffield includes ready made sandwiches, soups, a Costa Coffee provision, and snack vending.

Sites providing hot meals also cater for certain key religious dates and the contract caterer may also provide a service for special functions and events which is charged as cost (as it is outside the scope of the contract).

September 2010