Horniman Museum & Gardens

About the Horniman Museum & Gardens

The Horniman Museum & Gardens, located in South London’s Forest Hill, first opened in Victorian times. Since then, their collection has grown tenfold and includes internationally important collections of anthropology and musical instruments, as well as an acclaimed aquarium and natural history collection. The 16 acres of historic Gardens include a Victorian conservatory and provide panoramic views across London. Visitor numbers are in the region of 700,000 per year.

With support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Gardens have recently been redeveloped at a cost of £2.3 million. Additional recent developments within the museum include an architecturally stunning covered outside seating terrace for the visitor café.

Our Approach

Montfort Catering Consultants were appointed to undertake a review and develop an integrated catering strategy and business plan to develop the existing visitor catering. From our review of the café and wider visitor catering it was apparent that elements of the operation needed realigning to accommodate increased demand and enhance both the visitor experience and financial return to the Museum. We have worked with the Horniman and their reappointed Caterer to develop a revised visitor catering strategy and business plan, along with providing specialist catering operational and design support in relation to the new outside space, redeveloped kitchen and counter. A number of new additional visitor catering operations have now also been developed as a consequence and are trading well.

Advice & support has included:

  • Client objectives & site dynamics determined
  • Local, national research & competition review
  • Benchmarking – demand, financials, best practice & market trends
  • Demand & financial models developed
  • Revised concept requirements identified
  • Development of visitor catering strategy & business plan
  • Alignment of contract to revised operation
  • Implementation support & on-going mentoring for revised & new visitor catering
  • Working with design teams

Our on-going role includes strategic support and direction for the implementation of the strategy & business plan. Our recent annual review identified that during our five-year involvement the café sales have increased from £400,000 to £1.2m, resulting in a greater return for both the Caterer and the Museum. The café was also awarded ACE Café of the Month, December 2017.

Get in touch

Get in touch to see how we could help you.

Montfort Consultants Ltd
86-90 Paul Street
3rd Floor

Tel: 020 3667 7286
Email: info@montfortconsultants.com