Tender Opportunities

All current tenders related to The Food WorksSW site will be advertised here:

A Tender Reference SW01 Café Operator
C Published Date 25th November 2019
D Length of response Response limited to:   20 A4 pages maximum (and excluding copies of insurance, finances, policies and other documents requested within the tender document which can be provided as a separate appendix).
E Submission requirements By email to: bryony.whiley@foodanddrinkforum.co.uk With the subject header as:  ‘Tender Reference SW01 Café’


Post to: Bryony Whiley, “Confidential” The tender reference number, The Food and Drink Forum Limited, The Business Centre, Southglade Food Park, Gala Way, Nottingham NG5 9RG.

Both routes must ensure that the submission is received by the stated deadline below.

F Time Table
Stage  Timeline / Deadline
Tender Opportunity Published Date:

25th November 2019

Re-published 21/01/2020

Supplier Engagement and Information Day: Previously held on the 17th December 2019
Questions Regarding The Tender Document Can Be Sent:

Between the 21st January 2020 and 10th February 2020 to: bryony.whiley@foodanddrinkforum.co.uk

Responses to questions received: Will be posted on this page of The Food & Drink Forum website within 48 hours of receipt. (Receipt within working days/hours and excluding weekends/bank holidays)
Final Tender Submission Deadline Date and by 5pm 5pm on  18th February 2020
Tender Evaluation And Due Diligence Period 19th – 25th February 2020
Interviews If Required 3rd March 2020
Award Contract to Successful Bidder 5th March 2020
Response To All Bidders Of Outcome  11th March 2020
Contract Start Date  1st May 2020
G Period of Contract From    1st May    2020                                To  30th April 2023
H Budget / Price The expectation is of rental of £29,100 to the Forum over the three year period (refer to section J)
I Insurance Requirements    The following Insurance values should be adopted:

Employers Liability Evidence required upon contract
Public Liability: £5m Evidence required upon contract
Own Contents Liability Evidence required upon contract
J Tender Specification








The Forum is seeking Tenders from suitably experienced operators to operate the Food WorksSW Café, which will be equipped and furnished as a ready to operate unit, from 1st May 2020 or earlier, subject to completion and handover of the Food WorksSW site following construction.

The Café (28 metres squared) will be equipped with a fitted, working and lockable kitchen (see attached ‘Food WorksSW – Floor Plan.pdf’) housing kitchen equipment (refer to ‘Food WorksSW – Café and Test Kitchen Schedule’) and serving counter. The Forum will welcome discussions with the contracted operator around the type of equipment being installed in the kitchen, and to discuss the needs of the operator in terms of housing the operator’s own existing equipment within the kitchen if required. Seating and tables for approximately 25 will also be included. In addition, the Touch Down Area will be available with additional seating for approximately 30 people. The outside patio area will also be available, weather permitting, with seating for approximately 20 people.

The main customer base creating footfall for the Café at Food WorksSW will be business people working in the food and drink industry using the facility to meet people, attend events and access specialist support from The Forum. As the development is brand new, it may take time to build this customer base. Consequently, the Café Operator will be required and has the opportunity to create and build its customer base through other avenues including but not limited to, local businesses/business people operating in and around the estate such as those in offices at The Hive where there are no catering services.

Through external marketing and PR there should be an opportunity to attract local people and passing trade with varied opening times, organising cookery activities, hosting celebration events or offering external catering services, as examples, in order to build a brand, reputation and promote the Café Operators Unique Selling Point.

1. General Trading Terms

It is our intention to sublet the Café Kitchen and Touch Down Area and offer the service contract on the basis of the following terms:

1.1 It is run as a separate, independent business with a commitment to support, complement and enhance the facilities that meet The Forum’s social values that contribute to the local community in Weston-super-Mare (refer to the ‘Café Commitment’ within the attached documents to this tender).

1.2 An under lease will be granted for 3 years (with a performance management review every 6 months to support the Operator) with the option to extend for a further two years, at the sole discretion of The Forum.

1.3 Our offer:

·         Rent to include broadband access (for the Café Operator and its customers) and security.

·         Rent to exclude business rates (see note below), waste, utilities, insurance, equipment repairs (if not under warranty) and kitchen maintenance. Please note that utilities to the café kitchen are sub-metered from the Engagement Centre’s supplies. The Café operator will be required to pay for the usage of utility supplied and contribute to any standing charges imposed.

·         Exclusive access to the Café Kitchen and counter area for food preparation and catering.

·         The Café Operator will be the selected supplier to cater for in-house Forum events, training sessions and workshops as well as for businesses and organisations that have hired conference facilities, meeting rooms and require catering.

·         An opportunity to provide outside catering and to use additional kitchen space in Food WorksSW, with charges offered at a discounted rate. Additional kitchen space will require booking.

·         Option of utilising the Touch Down Area and outside patio area free of charge for the Café Operator’s events, functions and or extended opening hours post normal business hours Monday to Friday 9 to 5pm.

·         Cleaning and maintenance of the Touch Down Area, Café Kitchen and patio area will need to be maintained by the Café operator.

NB The Café Operator may be able to seek mandatory or discretionary Business Rate Relief. However, they will not be known until the building is complete and has been valued for Business Rates.

2. Rent

2.1 Rent will be paid monthly in advance on the 1st day of each month by standing order.

2.11 A deposit of £850 will be required at the commencement of the contract and held until the end of the contract and returned to the Operator subject to the terms of the under lease and deposit deed.

2.2 We recognise that footfall will be low initially but will grow during the first six months. Consequently, a sliding scale rent will be offered for payment by the Café Operator for the first six months to support the Café Operator generate revenue. The introductory Rental Payments schedule will be:

·         1st May 2020 – £400

·         1st June 2020 – £500

·         1st July 2020 – £600

·         1st August 2020 – £650

·         1St September 2020 – £700

·         1st October 2020 – £750

2.3 In the unlikely event that the Food WorksSW is not ready for operations due to delays in construction or opening, the Forum and Café Operator can revise the above introductory Rental Payments by agreement. In cases of delayed construction or opening of the Food WorksSW site, The Forum will not be liable for any costs or loss of income incurred by the Café Operator.

2.4 From 1st September 2020 rent of £850 will be paid monthly in advance by standing order.

Rent to be reviewed annually thereafter.

2.5 All marketing, branding and design will be undertaken in co-operation with The Forum to ensure Food WorksSW branding guidelines are followed.

2.6 Minimum opening hours are 9 am to 5 pm Monday to Friday.

2.7 All Forum owned fixtures and fittings within the Touch Down Area, Café Kitchen and outside patio area are to be maintained, repaired/replaced and cleaned at the Operators expense.

Café Area And Opening Times

The building is fully accessible with the Café situated in the entrance and Touch Down Area that is immediately visible on entering the building. It is full of character with double height ceiling, flooring and seating provided with access to training and conference rooms, business units, development kitchens, reception and toilets.

The Centre’s normal opening hours are Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm. However, as there are a number of facilities for hire such as meeting and conference rooms and 4 development kitchens, opening times may be extended between 8am and 10pm. The Café can be opened Saturdays between 9am and 5pm to provide services or to run any community courses or activities that contribute to the Forum’s Social Value targets.

What We Are Looking For In A Provider

·         Proven experience in running a successful catering business, especially where business meetings and or conference events have been serviced.

·         A financially sustainable business that can commit to a 3 year contract with associated rental, deposit,  maintenance costs, utilities, business rates, services and insurance costs.

·         Provide good quality, innovative food and drink using local produce where appropriate, and representing value for money. A range of hot and cold food and drink will be required.

·         An ability to work with The Forum to create a welcoming and attractive space which enhances Food WorksSW and attracts both businesses and visitors.

·         A willingness and active approach to promote the Café and Food WorksSW using social media, posters, leaflets and other advertising methods for business use.

·         Knowledge of the local area in Weston-super-Mare and of local businesses that may want to utilise Food WorksSW and its café.

·         An ability to work with fluctuating demand within our opening hours and at our events.

·         Compliance with all of The Forum’s policies, including security arrangements for the kitchen.

·         A willingness to work with the Food WorksSW management with respect and flexibility for the mutual benefit of our businesses, tenants and community.

·         A willingness to maintain a welcoming and inclusive atmosphere for all members of the local community and contributing to Food WorksSW’s social value activities – refer to our Social Value requirements and targets below i.e. the ‘Café Tenderers Commitment’:

·         To be responsible for and maintenance of The Forum’s facilities and equipment that the Operator will use, namely:-

I.            Touch Down Area, Café area and Kitchen and Patio area floors, décor, lighting and walls cleaning, maintenance, repairs, replacements and safe use;

II.            Kitchen Equipment routine maintenance, cleaning and inspections; (The Forum will aim to source equipment with a warranty of between 1 – 10 years)

III.            Furniture and Equipment cleaning, repairs and replacements; (The Forum will aim to source equipment with a warranty of between 1 – 10 years)

IV.            General repairs and replacements across all areas named in I above.

V.            Key holder responsibility

·         To take responsibility for, but not limited to, all regulatory requirement associated with the Café operation:-

I.            Food safety – we expect the Operator to achieve 4 or above on the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme

II.            Servicing and maintenance of appliances and equipment, e.g. gas certificates, PAT tests etc.

III.            H&S

IV.            Fire safety

V.            Pest Control

VI.            Waste management

K Specific Deliverables / Milestones & Requirements/ Deadlines / Outcomes / Outputs To be included with tender submission (where relevant);

·         A proposal that covers:

·         Your experience in operating similar or relevant business, examples of any recent catering work undertaken or current business model.

·         Your vision for the Café and how it supports Food WorksSW.

·         Your marketing and PR plans of the Café and how you will attract business custom.

·         Proposed layout of the kitchen. This should include a list of additional catering equipment you may require to purchase and install in order to fulfil the requirements of this tender.

·         Suggested menus and pricing for counter services, breakfast snacks, a small meeting lunch and a Conference buffet.

·         Your proposals and commitment towards our Social Value Plan – see ‘Additionality’ below. An extract of the plan, outlining the Café Tenderers commitment is attached.

·         How you will ensure food safety and seek inspection by Environmental Health.

·         Trading figures for last the 2 years and a clear draft cash-flow and financial proposal for the first two years of operation. Note that the successful operator will be responsible for the all business rates, waste, insurance (noting requirement for £5m Public Liability Insurance), line rental and telephone calls as well as utility charges (gas, electric and water).

·         Confirmation that you will provide sales information relating to revenues generated from within Food WorksSW and associated trade. This does not need to include sales information relating to external trade.

·         Any perceived risks with the operation of the Café and how you plan to negate them.

·         Information on food sourcing.

·         Proposed opening hours.

·         Events you want to hold at the Centre.

·         Staff structure and recruitment plans.

·         Confirmation that you are able to increase your Public Liability Insurance to cover £5m before or on the start of the contract. A copy of the Pubic Liability Insurance for £5m will be required no later than 5 working days after the commencement of the contract.

·         Copies of:

·         Current company insurance documents, noting Employers Liability Insurance is required by law.

·         Copies of Health & Safety and Fire Safety Policies.

·         Details of your current Food Hygiene Rating Scheme score and relevant Food Hygiene Certificates where applicable.

L Additionality There is the option to use the café space for pop-up evenings and weekends, cookery classes or other activities in agreement with the Food WorksSW staff, noting that Forum policies and procedures must be adhered to.

We are particularly keen to view tenders that:

·         encourage partnerships, working with local communities (neighbouring communities, community groups, education institutions, charitable organisations, employment initiatives etc.);

·         focus on locally sourced and supplied produce;

·         encourage ‘travel local and employ local’;

·         promote values around sustainability;

·         demonstrate innovation in menus, activities and offerings;

·         support widespread marketing of the Centre and its facilities;

M Monitoring and or Reporting Requirements EVALUATION AND CONTRACT AWARD

The basis of the tender is for the applicant to provide the service as described in the specification and brief.

The Forum does not bind itself to accept the lowest or any tender and will not in any circumstances reimburse the cost of preparing and submitting tenders.

The contract will be awarded on the basis of which tender is assessed as the most economically advantageous to the Forum and viability of Food WorksSW, taking into account the criteria within the evaluation and weighting details.

In the event that it becomes apparent to The Forum that a tender contains an error, the operator shall be required to stand by their submission or withdraw their bid. The Forum may seek clarification of tenders or individually priced items within the tender, that look abnormally priced compared to other bids received for similar aspects of the project.

Following the selection and approval process the successful operator will be notified and a letter of intent will be raised. Unsuccessful applicants will be notified at this time. The Forum will not publish details around this tender.

Only the information supplied in the manner requested within this document will be assessed.

The Forum regrets that it cannot evaluate any other form of submission, e.g. sales brochures and company literature.



It is expected that The Forum will hold monthly meetings with the Operator to assess financial (sales relating Food WorksSW) and operating performance and the Social Value Plan Commitment (Café Operator Commitment) against the initial tender submitted.

N Documents Enclosed Food WorksSW – Floor Plans

Food WorksSW – Kitchen Floor Plan and Elevations (NB Items in green not purchased)

Food WorksSW – Café and Test Kitchen Schedule (Equipment to be installed – NB Items in green not purchased)

The Food and Drink Forum Sustainability Policy

Social Value Plan Commitment (‘Café Operator Commitment’)

Please note that the Under Lease is currently being drafted at the time of the release of this tender but will be available in draft to those interested businesses from the 13th of December upon request.

Additional information in relation to the tender and an application pack can be downloaded here:


Food WorksSW – Floor Plan

Food WorksSW – Kitchen Floor Plan and Elevations

Food WorksSW – Cafe & Test Kitchen ScheduleFDF Environmental and Sustainable Development Policy and Action Plan

Cafe Tender Social Value

QUESTIONS RECEIVED 17.12.2019 at the Engagement Information Drop in Session

Held at The Hive, Beaufighter Road, Weston-super-Mare, BS24 8EE

Q – Will there be space for wedding tastings?

A – Yes, the small test kitchen could be useful for the preparation of the food, and the café / lounge seating area will be suitable for the tastings. Alternatively, two of the large meetings are provided with hand sinks for food safety purposes so that food and drink can be displayed to potential clients.

Q – If the café operator wishes to hire other meeting rooms / development kitchens will a discounted price apply?

A – Yes, we will be flexible to accommodate volume bookings.

Q – What is the rental value of the production units?

A – The rent and service charge will be approximately £13.50 per square foot, which is in line with market value for this type of unit.

Q – Will the production units be fully fitted?

A – The units will be built to a high quality food-grade standard, they will meet environmental health regulations and appropriate for BRC standard to enable users to install their own equipment as appropriate for use.

Q – Do Southglade Food Park and Leicester Food Park have cafes? Why the decision to have a café at The Food WorksSW?

A – Southglade Food Park and Leicester Food Parks do not have cafes. North Somerset Council reviewed the potential offering in the South West region and took the decision to incorporate a café to service the engagement centre and surrounding business units that are not currently catered for. There are few places in the area where business professionals can meet. The cafe will also aid the Engagement Centre to be used as a regional centre for food and drink development, there are few places in the region where business professionals can meet informally along the M5.

Q – Do North Somerset Council / The Food WorksSW have connections with the local school with it being in such close proximity?

A – The new school opens in September, North Somerset Council believe there will be opportunities to work together that could tie in with The Food WorksSW social values.

Q – Another Food Park in South Wales has been mentioned, which is this?

A – Food Centre Wales. There are a number of variations of food parks across the UK, all with slightly different offerings dependent on local and regional requirements. For example, some focus on the provision of production units whist others focus on the development kitchens and innovation support.

Q – If the café operator also leases a production unit and towards the end of their 5 year lease expresses interest in taking a unit on phase 2, would there be flexibility if they have to wait for the unit to be completed and this takes them just over their five year lease?

A – The intention is for leases to end at the five year period in order to provide other businesses the opportunity to utilise production units. However, in the situation described, we will endeavour to offer flexibility to accommodate business sustainability.

Q – Will there be a five year lease restriction for the café operator?

A – No, the five year lease restriction applies to the production units to ensure the site is working as planned.

Q – Is there space in the café to produce food (following discussions around development kitchens)?

A – Yes, the kitchen will be fully equipped and suitable for food preparation. Please note the information provided regarding the equipment to be installed in the café and tender requirement is to aid the operator to define what, if any, additional equipment you may need to operate the café.

Q – Will the café operator have the opportunity to run stand-alone events?

A – Yes, we will expect the café to be operational Monday-Friday, 9AM-5PM in line with the opening hours of the engagement centre. Outside of these hours the café operator can utilise the facilities as they require e.g. evenings / weekends. We would expect the café operator discuss these requirements and to work closely with The Food WorksSW team to manage the shared space to avoid operational issues.

Q – Will people who book the meeting rooms be obliged to use the café operator’s catering services?

A – We will strongly recommend that all those requiring refreshments use the onsite services. The Food WorksSW team will use the onsite catering services for their events, workshops and training sessions. The Food WorksSW team will offer the café operators catering services as part of the room booking process.

Q – Can the café operator brand the café under their existing branding?

A – The Food WorksSW brand will be the overriding brand used for any activity relating to the promotion of the engagement centre, particularly when marketing the facilities and support available.  The café can be given a name or have the name of the operator and any marketing by The Food WorksSW will include the name of the café operator as a partner, any marketing by the operator relating to The Food WorksSW must include ‘business name’ at The Food WorksSW

Q  – Will there be café customers on day one of opening? And if not, will The Food WorksSW consider a rent-free period?

A – Marketing  of The Food WorksSW site will be increased from January onwards and there will also be an open-day which we expect to be well attended which will launch the site. With this in mind there will be a discounted rent period at the beginning of the lease (as noted within the tender application pack).

Q – What will the business rates be for the café?

A – It is expected the Valuation Office will value the site and areas when it is fully built and there is nothing similar in the area to compare against, so it cannot be advised at this point what the business rates will be.

Q – What style of seating will be in the café?

A – There will be mixed dining seating in front of the café comprising of low level tables and benches, low level tables and dining chairs, high level seating and bar stools running along the wall, and further high level seating and bar stools making up the 25 covers. There will be a range of comfortable seating options in the touch down area, providing a further 30 covers.

There will be a range of outdoor seating and dining furniture on the outdoor patio area which will provide an additional 20 covers.

Q – Can equipment be changed / added?

A – The majority of the equipment within the kitchen is set in stone, but has been chosen using industry knowledge. There is the possibility for discussions to take place between The Food WorksSW team and the café operator to discuss specific equipment needs – there may be the possibility for further equipment to be added.

The deadline to submit questions relating to the tender has been extended from Thursday 19th December 2019 to 12PM on Friday 10th January 2020.

QUESTIONS RECEIVED 18.12.2019 – received by The Food & Drink Forum via email

Q – Can we just confirm that the caterer will be expected to purchase light equipment and display equipment.?
A – Please review the documentation regarding the catering equipment provision, noting the requirement to list additional equipment you may require in order to fulfil the requirements of this tender. The Food WorksSW team will welcome discussions with the contracted operator around the type of equipment being installed in the kitchen, and to discuss the needs of the operator in terms of housing the operator’s own existing equipment. There may be opportunities to support the purchase of additional equipment dependent on the proposed requirements.

Q – Can we access the kitchen 24hrs a day?

A – Yes by prior agreement.

Q – How many in-house events forums do you see requiring catering per month?

A- ‘In House’ events will be generated via a number of channels:

  • Food WorksSW training, networking, drop in sessions and business meetings. We expect the number of these events to increase throughout the first year. For the purposes of financial calculations, we suggest accommodating for a minimum of 3 training/networking or drop-in-sessions per month in the first year with 10 people attending at each.
  • Room hire by external businesses. We expect meeting rooms at The Food WorksSW to be in high demand, noting the lack of meeting space on the Weston-super-Mare. Please also note the meeting room hire at The Hive (next to The Food WorksSW) and the lack of in-house catering services.
  • Room hire through tenants of the twelve Production Units.

Q- Is there a store area for kitchen and staff changing rooms?

A – We will provide lockable space within the cleaners store and chemical store for the Café Operator.

Q – Is there a delivery area planned for food for canteen or will it go through restaurant as we couldn’t see on the plans?

A – Deliveries will be accepted at the back of the engagement centre and through the back door of the kitchen rather than through the café area.

Q – How many parking spaces will there be for conference and cafe facilities?

A – There will be around 22 parking spaces provided for the Engagement Centre, with an additional 4 disabled spaces.

QUESTIONS RECEIVED 05.02.2020 – received by The Food & Drink Forum via email.

Q – Our one question is, should the timings for the activities / training / offices / units etc not happen in line with your forecast, will there be a variance to the staggered rental agreement?

A – In terms of the staggered rental agreement we are looking to hold interviews with tender applicants and so would look to discuss the rental terms at this stage with individual parties.

Q – Whilst we feel that there are some external markets that can be brought to the site, the bulk of the trade will obviously be internal and will rely on the Food Works programme.

A – As stated within the tender we are looking for the café operator to support the internal catering needs of the site, however we do foresee there will also need to be a strong reliance on external trade and outside catering for the operator involved – we are looking for a sustainable business that has the ability to raise the awareness of the café and draw in existing customers, or build external business custom.

We feel The Hive Business Centre, which is in close proximity to the site will offer potential external business custom, and would like the Engagement Centre/Cafe to act as a ‘business hub’ to passing trade as the site is easily accessible from Junction 21.

Q – Is a visit possible please?

A – Yes we can arrange a site visit.

Please see a copy of the DRAFT underlease below – please note that this is a draft document and may be subject to change.