The Historic Dockyard Chatham commissioned a new visitor centre as part of its ‘Command of the Oceans’ project, which tells the story of British innovation and craftsmanship during the age of sail. Gratte Brothers Catering Equipment was awarded the turnkey delivery of this centre’s catering space.
Gratte Brothers’ installations included ventilation ducting, hot water systems, a kitchen prep area, dishwashing facilities, refrigeration, and a bespoke stainless steel cooking suite.
As the site is constructed of original ship timbers, the catering hall was a listed building – preventing the use of any hot works. Additionally, the project’s completion dates were to be synchronised and the ribbon cut by no less than three admirals. A delicate project like this meant Gratte Brothers had to maintain close links with the museum works’ main contractor.
Without free access to the site, Gratte Brothers also invested additional time with the consultants early in the design phase to ensure challenges were easily resolved. This close contact was maintained through to completion of the project.
Despite a last minute change to the on-site catering team, delivery of the project was not only achieved on time and to budget, but the project as a whole achieved several RIBA awards, including shortlisting for the Stirling Prize 2017.