The Chesterford Group (TCG), which owns the Churchill’s, fishnchickn and Bankers brands, has signed a deal with KFE to install high efficiency frying ranges at all six of its new store openings between now and the end of March 2018.
The agreement will see a further 11 ranges going in by the end of 2018, eight of which will be new sites while three will be existing outlets undergoing refurbishment.
Commenting on the decision to appoint KFE as its nominated range supplier, operations director for TCG Paul Goodgame said: “We chose KFE for a number of reasons, one because its ranges are far superior to anything else on the market in terms of the finish and the extent to which they can bespoke our ranges to meet our specifications. This is really important for us as our needs are a bit different to the average fish and chip shop and KFE is able to accommodate those needs.
“Also KFE were incredibly professional. The requirements these days to open a new site, especially when it involves change of use, are so much more in-depth, but KFE were able to do all the necessary work for us. For example, they worked with the council as well as with our architects to get things like DEFRA reports and odour control surveys done. They went above and beyond.”
With the first Kiremko range due to be installed in Churchill’s Hangleton shop in Hove, West Sussex, next month, Paul was at the KFE factory in Holland this week checking over the final specifications.
Talking about the importance of the frying range to the business, Paul said: “The range is the engine room of the shop. If that’s not right, then the food isn’t going to be right. It’s a fundamental piece of equipment and it’s critical for us to get it right.”
With plans to double the number of sites in the next five years, Paul believes it's working with companies like KFE and other professional services that is going to be key to the business moving forward. He adds: “It’s a difficult market right now, consumers' expectations are very high and we’re up against rising food inflation as well as a very competitive marketplace, but we’re facing up to all those challenges and we seem to be rising to the top.”
Commenting on the partnership, Paul Williams, MD at KFE, added: “Our area manager, Tony, has worked exceptionally hard over a long period to bring this relationship together and we are very proud to be supplying ranges to the UK’s largest chain and to be working closely with them in their exciting future expansion plans.”
The Chesterford Group, owned by father and son Hugh and James Lipscombe, operates 38 fish and chip shops across the three Churchill’s, fishnchickn and Bankers brands.