Tong Garden Centre steps up catering improvements

Improvements to the catering areas at Tong Garden Centre have created 35 jobs.

The refurbishment of the 132-seater Orchard restaurant is the latest part of an ongoing programme of improvements that have been implemented since the centre was acquired by businessmen Mark Farnsworth and Tom Megginson in May.

The restaurant's tray bakes, scones and quiche are made on site in the William's Farm Kitchen bakery and 90 per cent of the remaining suppliers to the restaurant are Yorkshire-based.

Farnsworth said: "Since we acquired the business in May, we have created 45 new jobs, including 35 in the catering team that services the Orchard Restaurant, the new Coffee Shop and Grasshoppers Adventure Playground café and we have increased the number of catering covers from 100 to 308.

"To celebrate the refurbishment, and to build on the £5,000 that we raised for Martin House Children's Hospice throughout the summer, we will donate 50p from the sale of every Christmas dinner bought in the Orchard Restaurant to this very worthy cause."

In addition to refurbishing the Orchard Restaurant, the new owners have remerchandised the plant area, created a new café and food hall, built a children's adventure playground and café, introduced concessions and have refurbished all areas of the garden centre.

Farnsworth added: "In years gone by, Tong was an iconic garden centre in the North of England and we intend to return it to that status and really broaden the appeal of the centre. The changes that we have made, including the much improved catering facilities, will help us really put Tong back on the map."



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