At Loungers we are passionate about how each and every one of our Lounge or Cosy Club teams become engaged and embedded within their local communities.
Our approach is quite unique and our teams are the essence of what Loungers embodies in terms of our positive impact and influence in local communities. Rather than employing ‘hospitality experts’ and ‘service champions’ we strive to recruit authentic, genuine and caring individuals who have an intrinsic and innate interest in making sure everyone that decides to visit us leaves feeling happy, is made to feel important and genuinely feels part of something special.
Whether that is regular visitors, newcomers, younger guests or even one of our four-legged friends; whether it is the search for a ‘home-from-home’, a lazy breakfast, family lunch or a night out in your glad-rags, everyone is made to feel welcome on an unconditional basis. All day, everyday.
Our teams are encouraged to connect with their communities by working with local groups, charities, organisations and businesses that are at the heart of the fabric of local life. We want to get to know and work with our neighbours and inspire people to do good by supporting each other and supporting local good causes.
A strong part of that ethos involves making things happen by arranging community events: Having fun through our personality, personal interests and a positive presence.
This includes site participation in our annual Lounge Aid programme, raising money for local charities across England and Wales: In 2018 alone, our teams raised some £60,000 for local charities. In addition, whenever we open a new site, we donate 50p from every burger sold to a local charity: this equates to an average of some £1,000 donated to local charities for each new opening.
But we also want a presence of the community working with us too, so Loungers has partnered with The Princes Trust and Clinks to support the transition of vulnerable, marginalised and disadvantaged members of our communities back into work.
Having grown up in the west of England and in Wales, the environment is very much part of our heritage and our future. So, we strive to make sure we protect it for the next generation of Loungers.
We work hard with our partners towards our goal of 0% of our waste being sent to landfill, and converting our food waste to electricity. We are also harnessing technology to lessen our carbon footprint by reducing water consumption in our washrooms, working towards using 100% low energy LED lighting in all new site openings, introducing efficient fans and motors in our ventilation systems and using heat recovery systems to reduce our reliance on non-renewable energy.
But we cannot do this alone, so we listen to our customers, our teams and our partners everyday through social media channels and good old-fashioned feedback. As a result, we have introduced PLA compostable drinking straws, recyclable takeaway coffee cups, we always endeavour to reuse and repurpose all of our redundant fixtures and fittings, and use a mix of new (FSC) and recycled wood for joinery and flooring.
However, education, information and understanding is what drives this change and the behaviours required to make the change truly sustainable. Raising awareness with our teams is fundamental to our green credentials so we work with them to appreciate the environmental and commercial benefits of recycling, reusing and reducing use of resources everyday.
Through our expert food and drink partners we always buy the very best produce and, whenever we can, we buy British. Through our suppliers we support the FSA Red Tractor Farm Assured scheme, and insist that every egg we cook for you is free-range and British Lion approved.
We are also working with our partners to reduce the impact of our deliveries on the environment by looking at ways that we can reduce, reuse and recycle cardboard and plastic packaging, and the number of deliveries we need.
Working with responsible suppliers and producers with high environmental standards is something we strive to maintain, so we have partnered with NSF International to manage our supply chain assurance programme that ensures that we only work with businesses with the highest standards.
We tend to manage our menu development on a seasonal basis and expect produce to be sourced so that both seasonally and ethically to ensure the best quality and the best commercial value for all of our customers and partners alike, whether that be fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, dairy and eggs.
We listen to and learn about the needs, expectations and wellbeing of our customers everyday so the continued focus on developing Gluten Free and Vegan dishes is of paramount importance, and we have been winning awards on the back of that, amongst many other things.