Start-up to use school kitchen to launch takeaway business

A York start-up  is to use a primary school kitchen during evenings and weekends to launch four new takeaway restaurants.

The appropriately named School Kitchen will give Carr Junior School, in Acomb, a share of the revenues for the use of its kitchens out of school hours.

It will also be running cooking demonstrations for pupils, as well as providing apprenticeships for school leavers.

The firm will launch operations on 19 March with four branded takeaway restaurants covering Sri Lankan, Mexican, Thai and tapas menus. Customers will be able to mix and match between the menus.

The firm uses electric bikes and mopeds for deliveries, and plans to install solar panels at partner schools.

Managing director David Nicholson said: “I’d worked in food for many years, although always in retail rather than hospitality. I was increasingly feeling that the big corporations I was used to working for had lost their connection with their customers and the communities they were based in. That’s why I decided to leave and start my own socially-conscious food business which prioritised customers and communities, rather than focusing exclusively on returns for shareholders.

​“I set about designing a business which had good working conditions, connection to communities, reduced carbon emissions, and decreased packaging waste, whilst still being financially viable. The result was School Kitchen. We’re so excited to be finally launching in York, with big plans to expand if the appetite – in every sense – is there for our new kind of takeaway.”

Vicki Kerr, head teacher at Carr Junior School, said, “We are really looking forward to being part of this exciting new venture. Not only is the food delicious, but it will directly benefit the school and the local community.”

​Mark Hassack, Chief Executive, South Bank Multi Academy Trust, of which the school is a part, added, “We are really impressed by School Kitchen’s innovative concept and strong commitment to sustainability. Not only will they offer support to our schools but the plans for offering apprenticeships shows their strong belief in supporting local communities, which is aligned with our trust’s values. We couldn’t be more excited to be part of this and we are looking forward to the upcoming launch.”