County Durham conference venue cooks up a storm with the help of local, award winning TV chef

Local TV Chef and successful entrepreneur Mark Earnden, Founder of the award winning Food Education Company and Managing Director of TSYMCO (a food purchasing business offering much more than just procurement) has joined forces with Finchale to offer fresh, affordable and delicious food for events and conferences, training delegates, tenants and staff at Finchale’s site in Pity Me, Durham.

The partnership comes as Pity Me based charity, Finchale, which supports veterans, disabled and disadvantaged people and those with health inequalities, continues to build up its working relationships with organisations and marks the start of a relationship that will see Finchale’s existing commercial catering brand evolve and rise to the next level with the rebranded Phoenix Kitchen at its heart.

Founded by Mark Earnden and John Hambling, TYSMCO is a fusion of food and business which has made its name within the care home sector. The new partnership will support the development of Finchale’s hospitality and conference packages to simplify operations and improve the ongoing customer experience.

Mark said: “It gives me great pleasure to be working with Finchale. As a professional organisation with a keen interest in health and well-being we are totally committed to providing our clients with the highest quality culinary experience and enabling Finchale to take the commercial element of their business to the next level. The partnership gives us the opportunity to turn the strides already made within the events, conferencing and corporate bed and breakfast market into leaps and create memorable experiences for conference delegates, entertainment guests, tenants and employees for years to come. “

The newly branded Phoenix Kitchen is now open to the public Monday to Friday and will be serving an additional 200 individuals daily including; training delegates, staff, tenants as well as the charities clients including the disadvantaged, disabled and veterans. Services provided by the partnership will include breakfast, lunch, a grab and go service, corporate buffets as well as a restaurant service for training delegates and bed and breakfast guests. In addition The Phoenix kitchen will also offer Fish and Chip Friday which is already proving popular with customers.

Mel Pears MBE, CEO at Finchale said: “Finchale wants every visitor to have a great experience. We are therefore delighted to be working in partnership with TSYMCO to deliver a high quality catering offer.

Finchale has offered facilities for conferences, meetings, training, bed & breakfast, lunches and other events for the past two years, and again we are delighted that TSYMCO will be working with us to offer these to an ever wider audience.“

The door is always open at Finchale and anyone interested in finding out more about the commercial facilities available should contact the commercial team on 0191 386 2634 or email

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Notes to editor

Finchale, based in Pity Me in County Durham, was founded in 1943 as a rehabilitation and resettlement centre for service personnel returning from active service, and it has retained strong links with the Armed Forces ever since.

The independent registered charity has supported disabled people and those with health inequalities for 73 years by offering specialist support for people with multiple and complex barriers to employment. It works with individuals and families from the Scottish Borders in the north to the East Riding of Yorkshire in the south, and across from Teesside to Cumbria. Finchale works with a wide range of employers and partners of all sizes from across the public, private and third sectors.

Set in 13.5 acres of landscaped grounds, Finchale offers a wide range of flexible business spaces which can cater for 2-150 people, available to hire from an hour to a full day. Facilities include: 18 fully equipped teaching, training and meeting rooms; auditorium seating for 80-100 people; more than 120 bedrooms (20 ensuite); IT suites; lecture theatre and classrooms; as well as conference, event and banqueting facilities. Services include access to audio visual and laptop equipment, Wi-Fi, as well as catering and parking. 

For further information please contact:

Katharine Hawking, Social Media and Marketing Officer, Tel: 0191 386 2634, Mob: 07540 963734, Email:

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