Having been responsible for PKL’s projects in a number of universities and colleges over the years, I’ve put together this brief overview to answer some of the most frequently asked questions from clients in this sector.
I need a temporary kitchen for an emergency / refurbishment / event – can you help?
Yes! Whatever type of project you have, if you need a temporary kitchen or catering equipment at your university or college, we can help. From large, comprehensive kitchens and dining rooms, to the hire of single coldroom units or items of catering equipment, we can supply a solution to match your requirements. Our in-house designers can design the perfect solution based on your specific requirements, and I can also offer advice on the best options if you’re not sure what you need.
We have listed buildings or access challenges on site – can you deliver to a site like this?
Of course! I’ve worked on a number of university projects which have involved contending with all sorts of factors. Our transport and planning teams are experts in planning deliveries to difficult sites, and produce detailed installation plans, risk assessments and method statements for every unit we install, taking all site factors into account.
Previous university projects I’ve worked on have involved manoeuvring kitchen units by hand or forklift through archways, craning units over walls, protecting listed trees and shrubs on site, and moving over or around listed buildings - our team can find a solution to pretty much any site challenge! Where access is required over lawns, listed cobbles or paving, we provide trackway to ensure that the surface remains protected underneath.
We specialise in non-invasive, non-attached weatherproof links to listed buildings, which when removed leave the building unmarked and in the same condition as before the hire started. We also offer a range of exterior solutions, such as painted finishes, vinyl wraps or screens, if the look of a temporary facility is an issue.
Will hiring a temporary kitchen involve lots of noise and disruption on site?
No, not really. I appreciate that you’ll want to keep noise and disruption to a minimum, and we work hard to ensure delivery and installation is as quick and painless as possible, by preparing thoroughly and creating detailed plans in advance so there are no delays or surprises once on site.
The kitchens themselves are not too noisy to run, however if noise is a particular concern (perhaps if the kitchen is near student or staff accommodation) we can also provide extra insulation to our plant and coldrooms to reduce the noise emitted from the temporary kitchen and ancillary facilities. Likewise, if you are concerned about extraction emissions from the kitchen, we can also supply our facilities with Odour Control Units which can minimise cooking smells released from the extraction systems.
What if something goes wrong with the kitchen or equipment once it’s on site?
We’ll fix or replace it! I know that our university and college kitchens are often used all day every day, so our 24 hour technical support line is always open. All our kitchens and equipment are tested thoroughly before delivery, but if something does go wrong we’ll sort it out as quickly as we can. For major problems or emergencies, we can dispatch an engineer immediately, otherwise our standard call-out time is within 24 hours.
Is it a difficult process to procure your facilities?
No! PKL is a Pro 5 registered organisation which is a consortium made up of ESPO, YPO, CBC and NEPO. This means that we have undergone a pre-tender process to supply temporary kitchens to the public sector. Universities can place orders directly with Pro 5, safe in the knowledge that PKL has been assessed for best value. PKL is also a Crown Commercial Service listed supplier.
I hope this post has helped to answer some of the questions you may have about hiring temporary kitchens, dining facilities and catering equipment for your university or college. If you've got an upcoming project that PKL might be able to help you with, please get in touch for a chat and a no-obligation quote. You can also find more information on the PKL website.