Café FAQs

What’s our policy on healthy eating?

Places for People Leisure supports healthy eating and aim to offer a range of products from which our customers can make an informed choice.

Just as each customer is unique, so too are their refreshment needs. Whether they are a high energy fitness user, a leisurely swimmer or just visiting us for an occasional treat we aim to offer something that helps our customers rehydrate and refuel.

Occasionally, due to popularity or we’ve simply sold out we may not always have that something to meet nutritional needs but we do encourage our customers to let us know. Whether it is food on menus in our full kitchen operations or individually wrapped in our Coffee Shops, we seek to identify foods that show nutritional guidance so everyone can choose with peace of mind.

Our menu development and product range seeks to identify or represent the following key nutritional guidance

  • Low Saturated Fat
  • Low or Sugar Free
  • Dairy Free
  • Wheat Free
  • Gluten Free
  • Vegetarian
  • Allergens

In addition, we also offer Treats, some are high in fats, sugar or salt. We don't recommend you have them every day but we believe that treating yourself occasionally is important. Happy people are healthy people. Many of our Treat items clearly show through traffic light labelling their ‘naughty’ contents.

Within our menu we highlight healthier and less healthy options by the calorie content and by adopting a number of rules below

  • Fresh Fruit is always available and is the lowest priced item in all our cafes to encourage everyone to choose these products and contribute towards ‘five a day’
  • Salt is only available on request and offered in a Lo sodium format
  • In our full café operations that still serve chips we only use the thickest chips reducing oil absorption
  • In our full café operations that still serve Chicken Nuggets, they are 100% whole meat rather than being formed and shaped improving the nutritional content.
  • We always serve salads undressed so you have the choice to add dressing if you require
  • All cooking oil is ‘Zero Trans’, removing Hydrogenated and Trans Fats.
  • We always offer Polyunsaturated Spread reducing saturated fats.
  • We do not sell ‘super- size’ fizzy drinks
  • Within our kitchen operations only ultra- low fat mayonnaise is used, reducing overall fat
  • Slush Puppie’ is the Sugar Free variant
  • Only semi skimmed and skimmed milk are used, therefore reducing fat
  • Malted wheat and wholemeal breads are offered wherever possible to increase fibre
  • 90% of drink choices within vending machines we manage are under the proposed sugar tax levy and we are confident this will reach 100% by the time of its implementation.
  • Snack Vending machines must offer at least two columns of ‘school compliant’ products
  • Our Children’s Meal Bags must offer at least two ‘school compliant’ products

What hygiene standards do we work to?

Places for People Leisure are very keen to work in partnership with government agencies and local authorities in promoting, developing and meeting the requirements of their healthy eating initiatives

Places for People Leisure are committed to a number of pledges under the Public Health Responsibility Deal that are specifically related to alcohol and food. These include:


A1. Alcohol Labelling

A2. Awareness of Alcohol Units in the On-trade

A4. Tackling Under-Age Alcohol Sales

A7. Community Actions to Tackle Alcohol Harms


F3(a). Non-use of Artificial Trans Fat

F5(a). Salt Catering: Training and Kitchen Practice

F5(c). Salt Catering: Procurement

Eat Out Eat Well

Our approach to menu content has also enabled us to secure the ‘Eat Out Eat Well Award’ for healthy menu content and excellent hygiene standards at a number of our facilities, particularly within Surrey, whose County Council initiated the scheme and has now been adopted by :

  • Berkshire
  • Buckinghamshire
  • Hampshire
  • Northamptonshire
  • Somerset
  • Surrey
  • Sussex
  • Wiltshire

The Eat Out Eat Well Award was developed by Trading Standards and Environmental Health to reward caterers who make it easier for their customers to make healthy choices when eating out.  The level of award is based on a scoring system that takes into account the type of food on offer, cooking methods and how the meals are promoted to customers. This scheme benefits both caterers by promoting their businesses and consumers by helping them make healthier choices when eating out.


Why do you sell confectionary and sweets?

We sell Confectionery and Crisps  whilst there is a demand -  and for many people a visit to a Leisure Centre is a treat. Many of our customers require a snack or a drink in the absence of  catering nearby. The challenge to an unhealthy lifestyle  is the  volume and frequency of eating coupled with inactivity. We would not want to discourage people enjoying an active lifestyle at our Leisure Centres or deny them the opportunity to refuel or have a treat.

We try to offer a variety of products that give all our customers a choice when they're looking to rehydrate and refuel. As tastes change then we would look to change the range as they become available. Manufacturers are addressing the health concerns by re-formulating their products either by size, calories or sugar content.

As of March, 2018 all our vended drinks are below 5mg of sugar per 100ml meaning they are low or zero sugar. In addition, we comply with the same guidance as issued by NHS England towards hospital caterers and snack providers. Guidance for 2018/19 requires 80% of drink lines stocked must be sugar free (We are currently 100%). Guidance for 2018/19 requires 80% of confectionery and sweets do not exceed 250kcal (We are currently 94%).

What food hygiene standards do we work to?

We comply with all food hygiene regulations and legislation, including the Food Hygiene Regulations 2006 and General Food Regulations 2004. All food and beverage provisions throughout Places for People Leisure are registered with the Local Authority’s Environmental Health Department

The catering operations directly managed by Places for People Leisure commit to the Food Standards Agency Hygiene Ratings scheme and as at November 2016 thirty four of our thirty five cafés that have been inspected are graded at the highest food rating of FIVE.

Who are Cafeology?

Cafeology is an exclusively ethical company specialising in the supply of the very finest ethical beverages. Places for People Leisure our proud to have worked in partnership with this Sheffield business since the summer of 2009. Cafeology offer a range of products  which carry many recognised marks such as Fairtrade, Soil Association and Rainforest Alliance to ensure the products we hope you enjoy really does make a difference to the farmers whose crops we buy. Cafeology truly believe in the importance of supporting all their producers, financially and professionally, and are proud to be able to offer one of the most comprehensive branded certified ethical range of professional ingredients available today.

Through their association with the Fairtrade Foundation as a certified licensee, Cafeology fully support and adhere to the guidelines set out by The Fairtrade Foundation in London which allows them to provide full traceability for their entire range of products allowing all customers to see how their support directly benefits the lives of hundreds of farmers and their families around the world.

Cafeology is made up of a highly skilled team of coffee professionals who have over 40 years of combined experience within the professional out of home coffee markets nationally. Cafeology has direct links with its producers in Central America and Africa alongside working with the Fairtrade Foundation UK and Coffee Kids as this assists in providing mutual development and education.