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 940,000 per year.

Our Approach

Montfort Catering Consultants have worked with the Horniman Museum and their appointed caterer since 2013. Our initial work included a review and development of an integrated visitor 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 senior management team implementing the strategy and business plan via specialist catering operational and design support. This has included the development of a new outside space, redevelopment of the kitchen and counter as well as introducing new additional visitor catering operations.

Our recent annual review identified that during our five-year involvement the café sales have increased from £400,000 to £1.3m, resulting in a greater return for both the caterer and the museum as well as an enhanced visitor experience, with the café independently highly endorsed.

In summer 2019 we were appointed to further support the museum with the development of a site food and beverage visitor strategy to support a new major masterplan initiative for the museum. Our latest support and advice has initially focused upon developing the business case and recommendations for new and redeveloped visitor food and beverage outlets while integrating with the wider conceptual proposals for the museum and gardens.

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


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