PricewaterhouseCoopers has announced that a new social enterprise will open on the site of a former station in Tooley Street, South London. The aim of the project is to encourage disadvantaged people to develop marketable skills and find employment through a new cookery school and restaurant.
The social enterprise bistro, named ‘Brigade’, will include a private dining event business and wine bar and will be operated by De Vere Venues, with support from the Beyond Food Foundation.
The intention is that it will offer vulnerable sectors of society, including those that have experienced homelessness, the opportunity to take part in cookery courses as well as an apprenticeship programme. The training and kitchens will be overseen by chef Simon Boyle, with the venue expected to be open to the public by the autumn.
The redevelopment of the former Fire Station has been funded by PwC alongside partners; De Vere Venues and the Beyond Food Foundation, with backing from the Big Issue. PwC has pledged to provide active support to the social enterprise centre with volunteer time and also financial support such as investing the profits from the bistro into local services.
A spokesman for PwC explained that the firm’s intention is to develop of hub for social enterprise, which combines expertise from the private, public and third sectors, as well as a model for social enterprise partnerships and business. Simon Boyle also explained that the project is something that everybody involved is really passionate about.
It will provide an opportunity to develop a business that will support disadvantaged people by helping them build a career in the food industry. Simon was also keen to point out that the quality of the food will be exceptional – the aim is to create brilliant chefs.