The Storehouse is looking for a new Cafe and Social Enterprise Lead! If you think this could be you, please read on:

Community & Social Enterprise Cafe Lead

Salary: £19 - 21,000

Hours 37.5 per week Permanent contract

Pension contribution (3%) and 28 days annual leave Weekend and potential evening work required

Closing date for application: 5 December (midnight) Interviews to be held at the Storehouse 14 December Successful applicant subject to 3-month probationary period


This is an exciting opportunity to join the team as part of the Penicuik Storehouse social enterprise, building the success of our community owned shop, café and community space in Penicuik High Street and supporting the hard work of our volunteers. We’re looking for someone who’s excited by an opportunity to work with and support a mixed group of volunteers, and sessional paid staff creating delicious, healthy food and vibrant community hotspot. You will have experience of customer service and working in a food service environment, and critically you’ll be a flexible and solid team player.

The post holder will be fully responsible for the day-to-day operation of the Storehouse’s community cafe. You will:

  1. Manage and supervise the operation of a community café run by volunteers and sessional paid staff. Creating a welcoming environment for all, providing a healthy, affordable, and quality menu for the local community and groups within the Storehouse ethos of offering local, sustainable, and ethical produce.

  2. Cook and create menus for the café, and develop products for sale in the community shop

  3. Support and develop food-based events and services in response to the needs of the community. These will include initiatives to build awareness and contribute to positive well-being within the community through the café menus, as well as training courses, projects and developing partnerships with local services.

  4. In collaboration with the Retail Manager, provide café administrative support, key-holding assistance and supervision and training of volunteers to ensure suitable development opportunities and satisfaction in their role.


We are a hub for our community, a place where volunteers can grow and meet alongside the creation of great seasonal and local food. The Storehouse Community Cafe is founded on 3 guiding values:

  1. Good Food: Serving healthy, affordable, local, and seasonal food. Built on the foundation of the well sourced stock of the Storehouse shop enterprise.

  2. Good for People: Our volunteers are the heart of the Storehouse. The cafe is run by a team of sessional staff and volunteers. Both are invested in through our training, gaining new skills, and given space to learn.

  3. A place of Community: At the centre of our work is our community, for whom we provide a safe, comfortable, and welcoming space to meet, explore and form networks within our communities of Penicuik, Bilston and Roslin.


The Penicuik Storehouse, its cafe and other projects are overseen by the Shareholders of the Penicuik Community Alliance, a Community Benefit Society. As a social enterprise we have set ourselves the mission to bring people together and make our community more resilient. In our shop we stock fresh produce, groceries, household products and toiletries that are local, environmentally friendly, organic, or fair trade to help enable people to live a healthier and more sustainable life.

However, we are much more than just a shop: We run a small community cafe and production kitchen, and we provide space for community groups , workshops and events. We are proud to work together with a variety of other community projects and charities.


Customer Service/ Food preparation

  • Prepare hot and cold meals and drinks to order in a timely manner and to a high standard.

  • Plan menus, sourcing ingredients in line with the Storehouse ethos

  • Develop and lead production of food products for sale in the Community shop

  • Ensure a professional level of customer service is always delivered by all cafe staff.

  • Develop and manage relationships with customers, volunteers, and suppliers to both ensure the efficient running of operations and create a welcoming and warm environment

  • Deal with customer queries in a courteous and timely fashion.

Volunteers/ sessional staff

  • Coordinate cafe volunteers and sessional staff to ensure that the cafe is adequately staffed.

  • Deliver training, supervision and support to cafe paid staff and volunteers.

  • Ensure cafe volunteers are working to the volunteer agreement as set by the Management Committee.

Health and Safety

  • Adhere fully to CookSafe guidelines using HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) based procedures according to most recent government regulations.

  • Implement, update and manage CookSafe guidelines for the Storehouse in line with existing policies ensuring healthy and safe preparation, storage, cooking and serving of food and drink from the café.

Food Management

Organise and manage the purchasing of café supplies to enable the cafe to meet the needs of its customers by:

o Undertaking weekly stock-takes

o Providing weekly sales and purchasing figures to the General Development Manager

o Putting a supply system in place to ensure stock control and efficient stock management


  • Increase turnover and profitability to create a viable and self-sustaining enterprise.

  • Increase customer numbers by marketing and promoting the cafe.

  • Increase the appeal of the cafe to the wider community and build community relationships.

  • Contribute to the ongoing development of the café and the promotion of a healthy eating lifestyle.

  • Work alongside the Retail Manager and in conjunction with subgroups of the management committee, to look creatively at the Storehouse as a whole. Using the café as a way of consulting with its users to find out what other services they would like to see provided by the Storehouse and how we can best market its services to the wider community.

Training and Professional Development

  • In conjunction with the Retail Manager, identify training requirements for sessional staff and volunteers and cooking courses to be run for a wide range of individuals within the community.

  • Run pre-agreed cooking courses in the Storehouse for a wide range of individuals, ensuring that pre-agreed outcomes are met.

  • Provide ongoing individual training support for café sessional staff and volunteers and provide new volunteers with a cafe induction and training session prior to starting volunteering in the Storehouse Community café.

  • Ensure all café sessional staff and volunteers have relevant food hygiene certification according to the CookSafe guidelines and are appropriately trained to carry out the role asked of them.


Plan, implement and evaluate the cafe on a regular basis in order that the cafe:

o Continues to provide a healthy and varied menu

  • Continues to provide food stock lines to the shop

o Is run professionally and profitably

o Has procedures in place to facilitate its efficient running

o Expands and develops according to the needs of the Storehouse and its users


Undertake the following financial functions to ensure that the cafe is accountable and ultimately self-sustaining:

o Undertake weekly stock-takes

o Record all income and outgoings on relevant cash sheets.

o Liaise closely with the Retail Manager to monitor performance

o Ensure that financial sustainability is achieved and maintained by reviewing supplier pricing, menu pricing and wastage.


  • Work within Penicuik Community Alliance’s Equality and Diversity Policy through personal example, commitment and action, ensuring fair treatment in employment, service delivery and external communications.

  • Adhere to our policy and procedure on confidentiality and the management and sharing of information; and to always work within the established policies and practices of policies provided within our Policy Guide Folder.

  • To cooperate with the Retail Management.

  • To take up arrangements for support and supervision and participate in all relevant internal meetings.

  • To undertake other reasonable duties as requested, which may not be specified within the job description.

  • Open and be responsible for the safe running of the Storehouse alongside the Retail Manager.

This job description is not exhaustive and is liable to review following discussion with the job holder.


The successful development of the Café will depend to a large extent on the imagination, initiative, and energy of the Community & Social Enterprise Cafe Lead. Alongside sound cookery skills, a combination of flexibility, enthusiasm, innovation, and organisational skills is essential.

Experience required

  • Proven cooking skills and knowledge of food.

  • Previous experience in the food service industry at a similar level.

  • Experience of supervising staff and volunteers.

  • Previous customer care experience essential.

  • Proven management and organisational skills - with thoroughness and attention to detail.

  • Proven leadership and ability to work on own initiative without supervision.

  • Proven interpersonal skills - able to develop good work relationships, enjoy meeting and working with people at all levels and from diverse walks of life.

  • Energy and vision to see tasks through to successful completion.

Skills required

  • Food preparation skills.

  • Good understanding of food hygiene and preparation.

  • Good understanding of health and safety issues and ability to implement procedures to ensure compliance.

  • Strong interest in, or knowledge of, special dietary requirements and wholesome food.

  • Excellent organisational ability.

  • Catering - a love of food, good presentation skills, imaginative menu and daily specials creation.

  • IT - good command of MS Office especially Word & Excel.

  • Financial - stock control and budgeting.

Formal qualifications

  • Level 3 Food Hygiene certificate (or must be willing to work towards if successful).

  • Other qualifications relevant to role

Other Desirable Skills and Experience

  • Familiarity with the Storehouse and the community of Penicuik and the surrounding area.

  • Supervisory experience in a commercial catering environment, including counter service/front of house and food preparation.

  • Ability to lead a team with varying talents and skills and work on own initiative.

  • A positive and flexible approach to work and the ability to remain calm under pressure.

  • Supporting, mentoring and encouraging volunteers to develop new skills and confidence and prepare for the workplace.

  • Experience of leading and running cooking courses with a variety of individuals or groups.

  • The post will be subject to an enhanced PVG application, please state if you are an existing member or not.


For more information please contact a member of the Management Committee on alasdair@penicuikstorehouse.org .


Please supply:

  • A CV

  • A cover letter (max 1 side A4) - please outline experience, examples and motivation.

  • Please provide name and contact details of 2 people who can provide references.

  • To be sent to: secretary@penicuikstorehouse.org

Shortlisting will be complete by 5 December, interviews are planned for the 14 December

(Photo credit: Morag MacDonald)

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