Changes to catering services provided at Cedar Court, Oak Tree House and The Maples

Closed 7 Jan 2018

Opened 16 Oct 2017

Feedback Updated 10 May 2018

We Asked

The consultation outlined the Council’s intention to review the catering service which was originally set up to provide hot meals at lunchtime to tenants and local residents at Cedar Court and Oak Tree House extra care housing services as well as The Maples Day Service based at Rivermead.

We asked for your views on possible alternative ways to access a meal at lunchtime and sought your view on the current service. We wanted to understand why you choose to eat/not to eat in the restaurant and we wanted to understand any impact closing the restaurant may have.

We wanted to use this feedback to inform the future catering requirements at these services.

You Said

The theme across the responses was that people did not want the restaurants to close. The majority of respondents wanted to maintain access to a hot freshly prepared meal.

72.5% of respondents from the Extra Care schemes (Oak Tree House and Cedar Court) indicated that they ate in the restaurants every day. 65% of respondents from the Extra Care schemes indicated that if the restaurants were to close they would not get a hot meal that day.

Of the alternatives proposed, only 30% of respondents from the Extra Care Schemes were happy to try a Fresh Meal Delivery Service and only 7.5% were happy to try a Frozen Meal Delivery Service.

75% of respondents from the Day Service indicated that they currently purchase the available hot meal. However, 37.5% indicated that they would not be bothered by a change to this service. 31.25% expressed concern that they would not get a hot meal that day.

Respondents from the Extra Care schemes wanted the restaurants to remain open, to continue to provide a freshly prepared hot meal alongside and opportunity to socialise. Respondents from the Maples Day Service were also keen to still access a hot meal but were more open to this being sourced elsewhere since it is not currently cooked on site anyway.

As well as responses from residents and service users, responses were also received from relatives, carers and an MP.

Responses also highlighted the number of people who would need assistance to prepare a meal should the restaurant close and that the restaurant had been an important factor when choosing to move into these schemes.

Feedback provided in the 6 Focus Group sessions also echoed the above views.

We Did

We reviewed the responses received and acknowledging the view that it would be best to keep the restaurants open, we sought a micro-business that would be able to use the kitchens to continue to provide a hot meal service.

We also looked at alternative ways to provide a hot meal including a hot meal delivery service.

We were successful is sourcing a micro-business to continue to provide a 7 days a week hot meal service in the restaurant at Cedar Court. This micro-business is also able to continue to provide hot meals to The Maples Day Service.

The landlord at Oak Tree House has also sourced a micro-business to continue to provide a service. This will be available 6 days a week (excluding Saturday, although cold food can be provided on the Friday to residents on request) and will provide a café service alongside one hot meal option each day.

There will be a change in meal price for each location. The meal prices are set by the micro-businesses and will therefore differ between sites.

At Cedar Court the meal price will increase from £4.45 to £5.05 for two courses (£4.05 for main course only). At Oak Tree House the meal price will change from £4.45 for two courses to £4 for a Main Course and £1.50 for a Pudding (£5.50 for two courses). At The Maples the price for a two course meal and refreshments will increase from £5.40 to £5.50.

Overview

We are currently reviewing the catering service which was originally set up to provide hot meals at lunchtime to tenants and local residents at Cedar Court and Oak Tree House extra care housing services. The caterer also delivers hot meals to day service users of The Maples (based at Rivermead) and provides meals for an onsite weekly lunch club.

The expiry of the current catering contract offers us an opportunity to look again at how we provide meals and how we can combine meals with new opportunities for social interaction. Using your consultation feedback, we want to design a service which is tailored to people’s individual needs and one which is sustainable in the future.

Why We Are Consulting

It has been identified that:

  • These restaurant facilities are not well supported every day
  • Those who do use the facilities are often buying snacks in preference to a hot meal
  • Some Maples Day Service users already choose to bring their own packed lunch, especially now that new fees policy means many pay the full cost and will be paying VAT.

Therefore we are looking at a range of options for residents and service users.

Please contact us:

  • If you have any queries
  • You require additional support
  • You would prefer a copy of the consultation in a different language or format

Contracts and Commissioning, Level 2, Civic Centre, Reading RG1 2LU

If you are responding as a user of the Maples Day Service, please go to Section 1

If you are responding as a resident at one of the Extra Care facilities (Oak Tree House; Cedar Court), please go to Section 2

If you are responding as a carer, a service provider or in any other capacity, please go to Section 3

To find the section you need, click on Give your views and scroll down to the bottom of the page and press 'Continue' until you reach the section you need.

What Happens Next

We will use the comments we receive to inform the recommendations for the Adult, Children and Eduation Committee in January 2018. 

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