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Jul 11, 2017

Anyone for tennis?

by Mike Benns - Board Director

Anyone for tennis?

Yet again, the annual trip to SW19 with champagne and strawberries & cream on the menu was upon us… oh yes, and a little tennis to watch.

I was lucky enough to attend for a day in the first week and marvel at the slick ‘machine’ that is Wimbledon once a year for a fortnight. It really is an amazing thing to witness and deeply impressive, even just from a management point of view.

Recent interviews with some of the top players have revealed that what makes Wimbledon so special is the adherence to tradition but keeping up to date with technology and continually moving forward.

This is evident not just on the courts but around them as well, as food and drink outlets serve up fantastic offerings to the average daily crowd of 35,000. Facilities Management Catering (FMC), part of the Compass Group, is the official catering company for the Championships and they do a hugely impressive job. Not only is it catering on a massive scale, it is also of excellent quality. Indeed, lunch in the Wingfield Restaurant is a must for any visitor who wants to do Wimbledon in style.

The enthusiasm and positive nature of the staff is infectious and given how hard they work and the hours, that’s a major management feat in itself. To get a flavour of what I’m getting at, have a look at this video..

The biggest surprise to me was that this is the first year that Pimm’s has been an official partner… I’d have believed it had been for years but by becoming official, it means they can do things outside of the grounds, on-bottle and in store. Elly Martin, SBM explains further..

We witnessed a lovely bit of Pimm’s shopper activation ourselves near the main entrance of the Wimbledon Morrisons store.

I have to say, I was at Wimbledon on one of the hottest days of the year and had my fair share of Pimm’s and it certainly worked because it was a classic case of forgetting how good they are… a bottle of Pimm’s is now firmly on my shopping list and may, depending on the weather, just last out the summer!

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