Jun 29 2011

Cafe planned for Harrow Arts Centre

Harrow Council has just approved plans for a Cafe at Harrow Arts Centre.  Regular users will know that Harrow Arts Centre currently offers a part-time café in the Studio (outbuilding) and a performance bar operated in-house with HAC stewards volunteering in the café. There is currently no catering offer to support venue hire and the bar facilities during performances just break even whilst not satisfying customer expectations. In addition. the café has stimulated customer demand for a fulltime provision on-site. The proposal will deliver a commercially operated Café and catering service from a local business, as integral to the Harrow Arts Centre campus and to support the activity and operation of the Arts Centre as a visitor destination.

The café will be run by an established local business. The business partner will occupy designated kitchen and bar areas at HAC under a fixed term lease. JAMS Kitchens Ltd will be responsible for the fit-out, staffing and day-to-day operation of all café and catering functions on the HAC site. The company will provide Harrow Council a guaranteed minimum income of £18,000 per annum, and, in future years, increase this figure to 5% of the total café and catering income.

HAC attracted 141,975 attendances (exclusive of visitors to the library and pool) in 2010/11 and saw a 29% increase in audience figures in the same period. Feedback from customers is already collected through staff interaction, comment cards, questionnaires, emails and phone calls. Customer response to the new café/ catering facility will be recorded both by HAC and by the business partner as part of the monthly monitoring process.

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