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Masterchef opens new kitchen facility

I was very pleased to learn that former Masterchef winner Sue Lawrence has officially opened a £160,000 kitchen facility at St Raphael’s care home in Edinburgh. St Raphael’s is run by housing association and care home provider, Viewpoint.

As a former principal inspector, I have long held the view that a smile from a member of care staff and enjoyable meals would be at the top of the list of many a service user’s satisfaction surveys. The provision of good meals is dependent on good kitchen facilities.

Description of the new kitchen

Helen Nicol, Head Chef at Viewpoint, said: “The new kitchen is a fantastic environment to cook in. It’s well equipped and contains top notch cooking facilities, which will make preparing meals for our residents much easier.

“We endeavour to make eating and drinking a positive and enjoyable experience for all of our residents, and the new kitchen will help to achieve this.

“With her local roots and immense talent, Sue is a true inspiration to all of us here at Viewpoint and we are honoured she has come to open our new kitchen.”

The kitchen, which is fitted with new appliances, drainage and worktops, will enable St Raphael’s to continue to provide quality home cooked meals and baking for its 100 occupants.

Sue is no stranger to St Raphael’s or Viewpoint, and has dedicated her latest book, Down to the Sea, to the Lennox House facility.

Sue Lawrence. Since winning the 1991 series of MasterChef, Sue Lawrence has written on food and cookery for a number of newspapers and magazines and is the author of Scottish Baking and A Cook’s Tour of Scotland. She is known for championing traditional Scottish produce and cookery.

Importance of enjoyable and nutritious meals

The importance of enjoyable and nutritious meals to service users cannot be overestimated. Here at Bettal we place great emphasis on the content and presentation of the food to service users in our policies and procedures.


Mealtimes represent more than just the provision of nutrition; they offer service users (and staff) the opportunity to form and sustain important social relationships. Food is used to provide comfort, express feelings, celebrate or reward success, and nurture companionship.

Eating occasions are integral to tradition, to family life, and to identity. In stressful situations or in unfamiliar environments, or indeed when the notion of identity is compromised, food (and the social connections to it) may significantly influence quality of life.

The dining experience is a focal point for participants’ broader experiences of residing in a care home. Mealtimes are at the centre of a service users’ day and an enjoyable meal can only add value to the experience.


Enjoyable food and mealtimes are a mainstay of life in a care home through which service users’ experiences are characterised, exemplified and magnified. Living life in a care home can be particularly stressful for some service users, and enjoyable food and positive experience at meal times can improve health and wellbeing over the long-term.

The investment by viewpoint in new kitchen facilities will I am sure turn out to be a sound investment. The well-equipped new kitchen which will make preparing meals for service users that much easier and maybe the former master chef make give some advice on the menu.

The opening of the new facility by former Masterchef winner Sue Lawrence is just icing the on the cake (excuse the pun).

Albert Cook Albert Cook BA, MA & Fellow Charted Quality Institute Managing Director Bettal Quality Consultancy

Photo credit

Creator: Chris Watt Photography

Copyright: Chris Watt Photography

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