FENLAND: Oliver Cromwell Hotel builds on philosophy of local being the way to do it
ITS visitors are international and its menus can reach across the continents, but at the heart of the Oliver Cromwell Hotel s philosophy is the fact that it is a venue run by Fenland people and catering for Fenland people. Creating the feeling of a truly
ITS visitors are international and its menus can reach across the continents, but at the heart of the Oliver Cromwell Hotel's philosophy is the fact that it is a venue run by Fenland people and catering for Fenland people.
Creating the feeling of a truly local hotel has been the guiding aim of the management team who on any given day can be dealing with the requirements of a multi national company's corporate luncheon whilst moments later serving afternoon tea to a group of friends who have popped in from a day's shopping.
Manager Rob Skoulding has worked with his team on another front, too, and that is to buy, wherever possible, local produce and to use, again where possible, local suppliers to keep their 42 bedroom hotel a truly local business.
"Our aims are really quite simple," he says. "We want to encourage local trade wherever possible. Our bar is popular with local people, our restaurant is first port of call for many going out to dine, and our Sunday carvery is always buzzing with local people, many of whom are not just regulars but have become friends of the hotel and our staff. It makes sense to drive the localness of the hotel home fully, and that means sourcing as many of our services as possible from local suppliers."
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Mr Skoulding is pleased, too, with the popularity of the hotel as a venue for local weddings, and for its association with the local community.
The hotel stages many charitable and social events, and has become a regular venue for the Cambs Times Wedding Fairs and the Christmas Charity Fair.
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The hotel receives many compliments for the style and manner in which it hosts weddings.
One recent guest wrote of their experiences of the hotel, listing many of what she felt were the pluses of using a local venue.
"Prices were reasonable and we had freedom of choice," she said. "Many venues we looked at wanted a set menu for a set price, whereas here I was able to explain what I wanted and they put the package together for me.
"The staff were very helpful - especially the wedding co-ordinator - and never once made me feel like I was bothering them (as someone who had previously worked in hospitality I was a tad high maintenance)".
She added: "Everyone talks about how expensive weddings are nowadays but we got a great deal with these and although everyone commented on how much it must have set us back we spent significantly less than other people would have done."
Comments such as these are very satisfying, says Mr Skoulding, but the hotel is not resting on its laurels.
"We aim to be as flexible as our customers want, and to be as competitive as we possibly can," he says. "It's a simple philosophy but one that works for us- and we hope for our customers, too."
Whether it's for a drink, a lunch, a special occasion dinner or a function the Oliver Cromwell has much to commend it.
And they pride themselves, too, on the leisure club which is central to their success.
CONTACT: Oliver Cromwell Hotel, 01354 602890.