Landmarc makes a real ‘mealworm’ of it for charity

Brave volunteers from Landmarc Support Services have been bitten by the charity ‘bug’ with their festive, lunch-with-a-difference to celebrate the first year of trading of Grub Kitchen in St.Davids, the UK’s only insect restaurant.

Grub Kitchen

Joined by colleagues from the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), staff from Landmarc’s Wales and West region were sponsored to eat a protein-packed, three-course meal, in aid of the military charity, Little Troopers.

Landmarc, which provides facilities and estate management to defence training camps such as Castlemartin and Sennybridge, was instrumental in helping chef, Andy Holcroft, launch Grub Kitchen a year ago, providing a grant of £5,000 through its Landmarc 100 scheme.  The scheme aims to support grass roots innovation in the rural communities around the Ministry of Defence training estate, providing both financial assistance and practical business advice to successful applicants.

Richard Incledon, area delivery manager from Landmarc explains the reasons for the festive feast:

“At Christmas, we all get a bit fed up of the usual turkey and trimmings so this year, the local team thought it would be good to do something a bit different, especially if it meant we could raise money for a worthy cause at the same time.

“Having supported Andy and the Grub team since the beginning, we thought it would be a great idea to celebrate the restaurant’s first year of trading with some alternative festive fair for our colleagues - and we weren’t disappointed.

“The food was incredible, and nothing like the creepy crawlies we were all expecting! We were treated to bug bhaji,  bug burger bites and mealworm hummus to start with, bug wellington for mains and cricket cookies for dessert. The overall verdict on the day was a resounding 10/10!  Everyone loved the honey-coated locusts, but the jury’s still out on the culinary delights of black ant garnish!

“Best of all, our intrepid eaters were each sponsored to raise money for Little Troopers, a charity which supports children with a parent in our British Armed Forces, providing fun activities and local events.”

Andy Holcroft, chef and owner of Grub kitchen added, “Landmarc has been with us from day one and the grant really helped give our Entomophagy (the practice of eating insects) business a kick start.

“The Landmarc 100 scheme is set up for business just like ours, who are keen to operate sustainably, have a positive environmental impact and provide employment for local people. 

“So when the team got in touch to see if we would host a Christmas charity lunch, we were delighted to be involved as it meant we could show everyone how easy it is to overcome their fears and just how healthy, nutritious and of course, tasty, bugs can be!”

The Landmarc volunteers were then treated to a talk and tour of the Bug Museum and Tropical Bug Zoo by Bug Farm founder Dr Sarah Beynon, before meeting ‘Dave’ the giant Madagascan hissing cockroach in an up-close session with Bug Farm Manager Sarah Johnson!

Rounding off the day’s events, Paul Snelling, Deputy Commander for the DIO Wales and West Region (Executive Officer) said, “We’re always looking to support the people that live and work around the defence training estate and were proud to join both Landmarc and Grub Kitchen in raising money for this important charity, with an event that was just that little bit different.”

The Landmarc team is still collecting sponsorship for Little Troopers and donations can be made online at https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/landmarcgrubchallenge. 

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