We listen. We innovate. We serve.

We listen. We innovate. We serve.

There’s no doubt in our minds that our people help to make the difference to your service every day. We believe in inspiring and motivating our people to outperform your expectations. Our passionate and committed teams always work hard to ensure we deliver on the promises made to our clients, we never stop looking at new ways to excite and educate through our fresh food.

Our commitment and perseverance keep us focused, impassioned, fresh and a company people want to work with and for.

The key team

Maria James
Managing Director
Bev Lusty
Food Service Director

Want to join the family?

Current Opportunities

1 month ago

Operations Manager, South East

South East

We are looking for the perfect candidates to join our regional team as an Operations Manager, covering approximately ten prestigious Independent School contracts across the South East.

As Operations Manager you will have full financial and operational responsibility for your business and will be an integral member of the senior management team. The schools you will be responsible for will include day schools, boarding, preparatory and senior, so an in depth knowledge of the Independent Sector is a must for this role.

You will lead, manage and develop your teams to deliver the very best service for our clients, ensuring continuous improvement and innovation across your business.

The ideal candidate will have bags of personality and enthusiasm with a personable approach and a strong sense of self awareness.

Details of the position

  • Predominantly Mon-fri but with weekends as required by the business.
  • 40 hours per week (as required by the business)
  • 52 weeks per year
  • Circa £55 -£60K per annum
  • Company car or car allowance
  • Laptop and phone

Benefits

  • The opportunity to work for an exciting and innovative company with a dynamic Senior Leadership team
  • Meals provided whilst at work
  • Life assurance
  • Annual pay reviews
  • Personal training and development plan
  • Opportunities for progression within a growing company

Key Responsibilities

  • Operational and financial responsibility for circa 10 schools
  • People management and development, including annual appraisals and succession planning.
  • Implementation and monitoring of company standards and procedures
  • Work alongside the Operations Director to grow and develop your area of business
  • Client relationships and contract retention

Ideal Candidate

  • A genuine passion for food and customer service with a flair for presentation.
  • A craft background or an exemplary knowledge of food, including current and upcoming high street and industry trends.
  • A minimum of 5 years’ experience in a senior management role, within Contract Catering which must include in depth knowledge of the Independent Education sector.
  • The ability to form and maintain lasting relationships with our clients, anticipating their needs and delivering on expectations.
  • Must have managed a patch of business of at least 10 schools, including both preparatory and senior schools within both day and boarding schools.
  • Strong financial and commercial acumen with the ability to prepare, manage and deliver on complex and varied budgets.
  • A strong leader with experience of managing both senior and junior managers and teams from five to fifty people.
  • Experience of mobilising new contracts.

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations.

We expect all staff to share our commitment of safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children/young people and an enhanced DBS disclosure will be sought by the company.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
1 month ago

Area Support Manager, Oxfordshire/ Reading/ Surrey

Gloucestershire/Oxfordshire

We are looking for the perfect candidate to join us as Area Support Manager for the Oxfordshire, Reading and Surrey area.

Reporting into the Senior Operations Manager for the area, you will provide hands on support to them across their schools ranging from supporting food development and events, covering Chef Manager holidays and absence, assisting with the mobilisation of new contracts, delivering craft and systems training as well as assisting with the implementation and auditing of company processes and procedures.

Within this role, your key focuses will be delivering the highest quality of food and service for our clients and pupils and ensuring that the catering offers across the region are exciting and innovative.  You will provide continuity of standards whilst covering Chef Manager absence and holidays and assist the Senior Operations Manager in ensuring that any initiatives implemented in their schools are maintained to the highest standards.

Our schools range from small day schools to large boarding schools and so the flexibility to cover early mornings and early evenings as required is really important.  We also cater for a number of events and so later evenings and weekends may also be required although this will not be a weekly requirement.

This is a hands on role that requires somebody with a strong craft background and the desire and knowledge to lead from the front as well as the ability to assist in developing our teams. You will also need a good grasps of excel and word programmes as well as the ability to use basic online ordering, payroll and finance systems for which you will receive training for. The ability to create and costs menus is also an expectation of this role

The successful candidate will have a real passion for food, a flair for presentation and a genuine desire to be up to speed with current food trends.  They will have the ability to work both as part of a team and on their own initiative as the role will involve project work as well as assisting with/leading day to day  catering services. Prioritisation and time management skills are therefore key to this role.

Details of the position

  • Five days out of seven, predominantly Monday to Friday
  • Weekends will be a requirement from time to time, especially during event season so the ability to work weekends when required is a necessity
  • 40 hours per week as required by the business
  • 42 working weeks plus holiday entitlement
  • £35,000 per annum (This is actual salary, not pro rata)

Benefits

  • The opportunity to work as part of a small independent company where you and your ideas are genuinely important to us.
  • Meals provided whilst at work
  • Life Assurance
  • Annual pay reviews
  • Ten weeks off per year during school holidays
  • Varied and diverse role
  • Personal training and development plan
  • Opportunities for progression within a growing company

Key Responsibilities

  • Provide day to day support to the Senior Operation Manager and their teams
  • Build and maintain a professional and friendly relationship with our teams, clients and pupils
  • Ensure consistency of food and service standards
  • Cover Chef Manager holidays and absence as required
  • Deliver added value events such as theme days, tasting tables to make the food offer exciting and encourage meal uptake
  • Assist with the management of catering budgets by assisting with accurate costings and monitoring stock, production and wastage management when on site.
  • Liaise with managers, clients and pupils to ensure we are delivering on and where possible, exceeding expectations
  • Deliver exceptional customer service for our clients
  • Maintain company systems & procedures, and legislation

Ideal Candidate

  • Excellent craft skills with a genuine love of food
  • Flexible attitude to working hours and travel
  • Understanding of nutrition and healthy eating
  • A flair for food presentation and an understanding of current food trends
  • A real people person who will immerse themselves in the culture of our schools and Palmer & Howells and drive our values within the catering team
  • Knowledge of health and safety management
  • Financial understanding of cost controls and waste management
  • Previous experience leading teams in a similar setting

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations. We expect all staff to share our commitment of safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children/young people and an enhanced DBS disclosure will be sought by the company.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
1 month ago

Chef De Partie – Term Time Only

London

Chef de Partie – East Dulwich, London

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations.

We are looking for a Chef de Partie to join our current team of experienced chefs at one of our independent schools in [location] to give our customers an outstanding experience and contribute to quality meals prepared using healthy, fresh, responsibly sourced ingredients. The school offers a varied menu which includes breakfast, lunches and suppers.

  • 37.5 hours per week
  • Term time role
  • £26,500 Per Annum

Palmer & Howells are looking for a Chef de Partie who:

  • Is passionate about food and people
  • Will commit to providing first class customer service
  • Is dedicated to enjoying the job and working as a team
  • Has a minimum of 2 years’ experience within a similar role
  • Can build relationships with client and customers

Chef de Partie Skills:

  • Experience using fresh locally sourced ingredients
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Excellent craft skills
  • Strong prioritisation and the ability to manage own workload
  • Recent proven experience working in a similar role
  • Relevant experience within the hospitality industry

We offer a contemporary high street range of dishes and are continuously looking to adapt our offer to emerging trends and customer tastes.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
1 month ago

Catering Assistant – Term Term Only – Maternity Cover

Cheltenham

Catering Assistant- Maternity Cover in Cheltenham, GL51 – Term Time Only

We are currently looking for a Catering Assistant to join our team at one of our schools in Cheltenham. Please read on to see details of this position.

  • 5 days out of 7, weekends incl.
  • Maternity Cover
  • 19 hours per week
  • 39 weeks per year based around term time
  • 4.2 weeks holiday entitlement
  • £9.50 per hour

Key Responsibilities

  • Basic food preparation
  • Food service to students & staff
  • Working on the tills during service
  • Cleaning duties within the kitchen
  • Health & safety compliance
  • Friendly and polite customer service

Ideal candidate

  • Previous catering experience
  • Working within a team
  • Food hygiene level 2 (preferred, but not essential as training will be given)
  • Basic knowledge of health and safety practices

We offer a contemporary high street range of dishes and are continuously looking to adapt our offer to emerging trends and customer tastes.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
1 month ago

Catering Assistant – Term Time Only

Tewkesbury

Weekend Catering Assistant – Bredon School, Tewkesbury

Palmer & Howells are currently looking for the perfect candidate to take on the position of Catering Assistant at Bredon School in Tewkesbury.

Bredon School is a co-educational independent boarding and day school for children aged 7 to 18 years old, situated within acres of beautiful Gloucestershire countryside. Bredon is a truly unique school, with an immense sense of community, support and togetherness. We are looking for the ideal candidate to incorporate these values into our catering offer.

As Catering Assistant you will work alongside the P&H team to deliver freshly produced lunches for the pupils and school staff over the weekends, working term time only. There may also be a requirement for delivering various hospitality requests for meetings, events at sports team events, etc.

Within this role, your key focus will be delivering the highest quality of food and service for our pupils and ensuring that the catering offer is exciting and innovative through continuous review and improvement.

Details of the position

  • Saturday and Sunday, 17 contracted hours per week.
  • 25 weeks per year based around term time
  • 2.7 weeks holiday entitlement
  • £10.50 per hour
  • Please note that due to the location of the school, it is essential that candidates have their own means of transport.

Benefits

  • The opportunity to work within the friendly and inviting setting of this prestigious school
  • Great work life balance
  • Personal training and development plan
  • Opportunities for progression within a growing company

Key Responsibilities

  • Basic food preparation
  • Food service to students & staff
  • Working on the tills during service
  • Cleaning duties within the kitchen
  • Health & safety compliance
  • Friendly and polite customer service

Ideal candidate

  • Previous catering experience
  • Working within a team
  • Food hygiene level 2 (preferred, but not essential as training will be given)
  • Basic knowledge of health and safety practices

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
1 month ago

Catering Assistant – Term Time Only

Tewkesbury

Weekend Catering Assistant – Bredon School, Tewkesbury

Palmer & Howells are currently looking for the perfect candidate to take on the position of Catering Assistant at Bredon School in Tewkesbury.

Bredon School is a co-educational independent boarding and day school for children aged 7 to 18 years old, situated within acres of beautiful Gloucestershire countryside. Bredon is a truly unique school, with an immense sense of community, support and togetherness. We are looking for the ideal candidate to incorporate these values into our catering offer.

As Catering Assistant you will work alongside the P&H team to deliver freshly produced lunches for the pupils and school staff over the weekends, working term time only. There may also be a requirement for delivering various hospitality requests for meetings, events at sports team events, etc.

Within this role, your key focus will be delivering the highest quality of food and service for our pupils and ensuring that the catering offer is exciting and innovative through continuous review and improvement.

Details of the position

  • Saturday and Sunday only
  • Zero hour contract
  • Term time only
  • £10.50 per hour
  • Please note that due to the location of the school, it is essential that candidates have their own means of transport.

Benefits

  • The opportunity to work within the friendly and inviting setting of this prestigious school
  • Great work life balance
  • Personal training and development plan
  • Opportunities for progression within a growing company

Key Responsibilities

  • Basic food preparation
  • Food service to students & staff
  • Working on the tills during service
  • Cleaning duties within the kitchen
  • Health & safety compliance
  • Friendly and polite customer service

Ideal candidate

  • Previous catering experience
  • Working within a team
  • Food hygiene level 2 (preferred, but not essential as training will be given)
  • Basic knowledge of health and safety practices

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
1 month ago

Catering Assistant – Term Time Only

Bristol

We are looking for the perfect candidate to take on the position of Catering Assistant at one of our prestigious Independent Preparatory schools, The Downs in Wraxall, Bristol.

Founded in 1894, The Downs School is an independent day school for approximately 250 boys and girls aged 4 to 13 and is situated at the end of a meandering drive, within 70 acres of stunning parkland and woodland. The school prides itself on providing a healthy, happy and wholesome environment and we need a Chef who can help us to deliver the same ethos through our catering offer.

As a member of our catering team you will be serving freshly produced meals for the pupils and school staff from Monday to Friday but will be required to work a number of Saturday’s to assist with match teas during sports seasons. 

You will also help to deliver various hospitality requests for meetings, events and sports teas and complete general housekeeping duties. Within this role, your key focus will be delivering the highest standard of customer service for our pupils, whether that be breakfast, lunch or supper service.

Details of the position

  • 22.5 hours per week from 10 – 15:00 (Monday – Wednesday)
  • A number of Saturday’s will also be required to cover match teas and events on a rota basis
  • £10 per hour
  • 36 working weeks plus 3.87 weeks paid holiday (term time only plus training days)

Benefits

  • The opportunity to work within the friendly and inviting setting of this prestigious school
  • Great work life balance with school holidays off.
  • Meals provided whilst at work
  • Life Assurance
  • Annual pay reviews
  • Personal training and development plan
  • Opportunities for progression within a growing company

Key Responsibilities

  • Basic food preparation and service
  • Kitchen Hygiene and washing up 
  • Hospitality and events service 

Ideal Candidate

  • A real people person who will immerse themselves in the culture of both the school and Palmer & Howells and drive our values within the catering team
  • Knowledge of health and safety 
  • Ability to work efficiently both on your own and within a team
  • Great customer service skills

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations.

We expect all staff to share our commitment to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children/young people. As such permission will be sought to contact referees prior to interview. The successful applicant will also be required to provide proof of identity and undergo child protection screening appropriate to the post. This includes career history checks with past employers and an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
2 months ago

Catering Assistant – Term Time Only

North Somerset

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations.

We are currently looking for a Catering Assistant to join our team at one of our schools in Bristol. Please read on to see details of this position.

  • Monday to Friday
  • 40 hours per week
  • 38 weeks per year based around term time
  • 4.09 weeks holiday entitlement
  • £9.50 per hour

Key Responsibilities

  • Basic food preparation
  • Food service to students & staff
  • Working on the tills during service
  • Cleaning duties within the kitchen
  • Health & safety compliance
  • Friendly and polite customer service

Ideal candidate

  • Previous catering experience
  • Working within a team
  • Food hygiene level 2 (preferred, but not essential as training will be given)
  • Basic knowledge of health and safety practices

We offer a contemporary high street range of dishes and are continuously looking to adapt our offer to emerging trends and customer tastes.

The school and Palmer & Howells are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to the post including checks with past employers and the Disclosure and Barring Service.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
2 months ago

Kitchen Porter – Term Time Only

Cheltenham, Gloucestershire

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations.

We are currently looking for a Kitchen Porter to join our team at one of our schools in Cheltenham. Please read on to see details of this position.

  • Evenings (5pm – 8.30pm)
  • 17.50 hours per week
  • 39 weeks per year based around term time
  • 4.2 weeks holiday entitlement
  • £9.50 per hour

Key Responsibilities

  • Basic food preparation
  • Food service to students & staff
  • Working on the tills during service
  • Cleaning duties within the kitchen
  • Health & safety compliance
  • Friendly and polite customer service

Ideal candidate

  • Previous catering experience
  • Working within a team
  • Food hygiene level 2 (preferred, but not essential as training will be given)
  • Basic knowledge of health and safety practices

We offer a contemporary high street range of dishes and are continuously looking to adapt our offer to emerging trends and customer tastes.

The school and Palmer & Howells are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to the post including checks with past employers and the Disclosure and Barring Service.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
2 months ago

Chef de Partie, Gloucestershire

Gloucestershire

At Palmer & Howells our passion for high standards, superb food, imaginative menus and accurate accounting is how we manage our business. With over twenty years’ experience managing catering in the independent education sector we are passionate about creating an environment that exceeds our customer and client expectations.

We are currently looking for a Chef to join our team at one of our schools in Cheltenham. Please read on to see details of this position.

  • 40 hours per week term-time only
  • 35 weeks per year based around term time
  • 4 weeks holiday entitlement
  • £12.00 per hour
  • Out of term work also available 

Key Chef Responsibilities

  • Preparation of the menu, using the recipes provided
  • Food ordering and stock taking
  • Food Hygiene, Allergen and Health and Safety compliance
  • Production of Hospitality as per client requests
  • Supervision of the team
  • Building relationships with client and customers
  • Friendly and polite customer service

Ideal Candidate

  • Experience of working as chef using fresh ingredients, with excellent craft skills
  • Food hygiene level 2 & 3 (further training will be available)
  • Knowledge of health and safety practices
  • Basic financial understand of gross profit management
  • Computer literate
  • Experience of working with in schools preferred
  • Self-motivated, using your own initiative, desire to learn and achieve.
  • Ability to motivate others

We offer a contemporary high street range of dishes and are continuously looking to adapt our offer to emerging trends and customer tastes.

The school and Palmer & Howells are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to the post including checks with past employers and the Disclosure and Barring Service.

Palmer & Howells is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, along with their protection. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with employers and the Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)
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