£2.5m WELB catering spend

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The Education Minister John O’Dowd has revealed the main beneficiaries of over £2m worth of catering equipment contracts in the Western Education and Library Board (WELB) over the past five years.

The Minister revealed the amount that was spent on catering contracts across the five Northern Ireland education authorities between 2010/11 and 2014/15 in response to an Assembly Question from North Antrim MLA Daithí McKay.

He advised that the total spend in WELB was £2,468,897.

The amounts spent on catering contracts rose from £301,996 in 2010/11; to £490,376 in 2011/12; to £508,604 in 2012/13; falling back to £416,095 in 2013/14; before rising to a five year high of £751,826 in 2014/15.

The Minister also revealed that the Antrim-based Stephens Catering Equipment Co. Ltd. was the main beneficiary, receiving £1,075,010 for the catering services it provided.

The seven other firms that provided catering equipment contracts were as follows.

Cunningham ACR received £278,180; McKenna Catering received £205,987; Thomas McLaughlin Ltd. received £111,274; Alpha Marketing received £90,529; Caterquip received £76,143; Galgorm Hygiene received £54,406; and CRB Solutions received £21,521.