Leisure Centre catering to be by local trader

DENNIS Laidlaw, proprietor of Madisons, High Street, for the last three years, has been awarded the franchise for catering at the town’s new leisure centre/swimming pool.

Dennis’s tender impressed Angus Council with its emphasis on healthy eating. There will be sandwiches, rolls and paninis - but no burgers or chips and definitely no fried Mars Bars!

There is also a strong emphasis on fairtrade goods, which is similar to the policy at Madisons.

He said: “We are triple certified fairtrade - that’s fairtrade, organic and rain forest alliance.”

On sale will be ‘Solo Top Health Pots’, with various ingredients which appeal to the young. Fresh fruit will always be available.

Opening hours will be from 7am to 9pm, Mondays to Fridays; and 8 to 8 on Saturdays and Sunday.

This means that schoolchildren can come in and have a healthy breakfast before heading for the Academy.

There are 42 seats at tables, plus sofas. Passers-by are welcome to use the catering facilities at the leisure centre - you do not have to be a user.

Dennis went on to say that he had been looking to expand the business, and when the leisure centre opportunity came along, it was heaven-sent.

He said: “Word got round very quickly - we’ve had people coming in to Madisons with their congratulations.”

In addition to the eight staff currently employed at Madisons, an additional five will be taken on at the Leisure Centre. Six will be full-time, and there will be further part-timers at weekends.

One part-time member of staff will be Dennis’s mother, Linda, whose catering experience includes 29 years cooking at Montrose Academy. She will be working at the leisure centre while Dennis ‘floats’ between the two.

There will be a trial run of the cafe this weekend, before the grand official opening of the leisure centre on November 17.