Having serviced Sofea's refrigeration equipment for a number of years, we were delighted when Jonny, Project Manager at Sofea, mentioned that they had have outgrown their existing premises and needed a new space with some new cold room storage. Here we ask Jonnny a bit more about this excting project. 

Can you tell us about Sofea and how this project came about?

We are an education based charity and an important part of our work involves providing work experience and employment opportunities to young people through our food operations. We work in partnership with FareShare to take high quality food that was destined to be food waste by the food industry and we re-distribute it to other not-for-profit organisations. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a huge increase in demand from our local communities to get good quality, nutritious food to the most vulnerable people. This increase in need has meant that we had outgrown our existing premises and we were given a grant by WRAP to help us to expand so that we can reach more people.

How did you find out about Royale?

Royale have serviced our existing cold rooms for a number of years. We’ve always been really happy with their work but more importantly they understand our needs as an organisation and really care about offering the best possible service that they can so that they can play an important part in the work that we do.

How has the project gone? 

The project has gone extremely well and we’re really happy with the new cold rooms that Royale have installed for us! A big thank you to Gary for talking us through the various options available to us, at every stage, and making sure that our needs have been met. The engineers were fantastic, a real pleasure to work with and they’ve done a great job. We’re delighted!

Would you work with Royale again?

Absolutely and we’d recommend them to everyone who needs new cold rooms and servicing or repairs on existing rooms.

Gary, Commercial Director at Royale, commented,

"It's always a pleasure to work with Jonny and the team at Sofea, we were happy to install a new walk-in fridge and freezer, all on remote refrigeration, using Danfoss. We are also refurbishing and relocating their existing chiller. It really is great to work for charities that our providing such an amazing service to our local communities and we are glad to be part of their journey."

Royale Air Conditioning and Refrigeration were delighted to get a call from City Harvest London, earlier this year, regarding on opportunity to quote for their new fridge equipment in their new depot.

City Harvest, a charity, rescues surplus food to help feed the most vulnerable in the community. Nikki Tadema, Chief Operational Officer, at City Harvest told us, “City Harvest has grown two-fold over the past few years and with COVID-19 hitting us almost a year ago we have seen a huge increase in demand for our services to those in need in our London communities.  

“We had plans to increase our warehouse space pre COVID-19 and realised that our need to increase our service meant we needed a larger space.  We managed to secure a fabulous new depot on our existing site that saw us move from just under 4000 square foot to just under 14000 square foot.  Hence we needed a Ferrari of fridges so the search began.

“As we were led by a grant to build our new home we had to go out to tender and have at least three companies bid for the work. It was one of the easiest decisions ever. Gary, from Royale, arrived to do a site visit and compared to the others he was just excellent and instantly knew what I was after. Price was a contributing factor, but the main decision came from him offering to project manage the whole fit out for me.  A huge help as being a not-for-profit we don’t have the luxury of bringing in a project manager and this helped me so much, I was still able to run our full operation.”

Gary, Commercial Director, at Royale added, “It was lovely to meet Nikki and help design a solution to manage the amount of food City Harvest need to sort, prep and distribute on a daily basis. We added a temperature regulated prep room, adjoining a freezer cold room and cold room designed with floor guides to sort and store the food. We also installed Daikin air conditioning in the new offices and installed a storeroom and kitchen, made with food safe cold room panels, within the main warehouse.

"The whole project has been a joy to work on and it was made even more special knowing we were able to play a part in creating this amazing space to in turn help and support many vulnerable people. City Harvest really is an amazing charity.”

Nikki, concluded, “The on-site engineers were just fantastic, nothing was too much and they were an absolute pleasure to have on site, I’m over the moon to see the initial ideas come to life. I would definitely work with Royale again and have already recommended them to DEFRA, should any other charities need their services.”

When was the work carried out?

Finished on the 12th December, this London cold room installation for a leading pharmaceutical company was a special task indeed. Time was of the essence, with the system installed itself incorporating a unique system-swapping timer – more on that below.

What type of system was installed?

While we’re often called on for tailored tasks, our request from this customer was truly unique. Intended for high-value pharmaceutical product storage, this one-of-a-kind self-managing cold room incorporated a 100% system backup.

This type of redundancy is for special cases where equipment failures simply must never happen. Utilising cut-off temperature sensor measures, this cold room rotates between its two systems every seven days and shuts off and cycles itself should temperatures fluctuate beyond a pre-determined range. 

Painstakingly designed to make full use of a 4.2m wide, 6.6m deep and 2.9m high space, the all-new state of the art installation uses rotating compressor cooling and J&E Hall condenser units. With a backup generator, fully bespoke interface and a changeover panel made from scratch in collaboration with Frostechnic, this future-proof unit is about as top-end as it's possible to get!

What requirements did the client have?

Cold room systems like these are usually only requested for the climate-controlled storage of high-value products. Being a prominent player in the pharmaceutics industry, our customer needed a floorless, sliding-door cold room with full redundancy. Better yet, the demanding profile of the floorless cold room was made more complicated by the need to work closely around pre-existing pipes in the ceiling area – a head-scratching challenge we happily took on.

What did Royale do?

Requests like these are far from the norm, and that means just about every element of this task was unique in every way. For Royale, that meant a lot of time spent collaborating and consulting with the client to produce the unique design and custom interface panel.

Were there any challenges?

This was an all-new installation – nothing was replaced or pre-existing. This, combined with the need to design and create a top-end, fully bespoke system with a rotating backup system made the project one of the trickiest yet for the Royale team.  Of course, we happily rose to the challenge!

What were the results?

We’re very proud to say that the installation went without a hitch. After a lengthy consultation and design period, our engineer for the project, Tim Dummett, saw the installation through to its conclusion.

What was that conclusion? An enviable state-of-the-art floorless cold room boasting absolute redundancy and full use of available space. Easily customised to exacting demands thanks to its unique interface panel, this cold room gives our customer the rock-solid confidence needed to store delicate and extremely valuable pharmaceutical products.

When was the work carried out?

Completed in April of 2019, the Cheverton Farm project started with a consultation by Royale engineers at the customer's Isle of Wight location. Gary Millard, a long-standing member of the Royale family, discussed the project with the owner of Cheverton Farm and confirmed the scope of the work.

What type of system was installed?

The confirmed project scope included a custom dry-ageing room with specialist control panels, dehumidification heaters and a custom meat hanging rail system. We also fitted a low-air-volume dual discharge evaporator in the meat cutting room to provide more comfort for the butchers working in there and so they didn’t have air blowing directly onto them.

What requirements did the client have?

Before our project, Cheverton Farm’s logistical setup for providing dry-aged beef was more than a little lengthy. Animals were sent to the UK mainland for slaughter and dry ageing before being returned for sale at Cheverton Farm. The new system had one simple requirement: to enable Cheverton Farm to handle the entire process on-site, removing the need for excessive and costly travel.

By providing Cheverton Farm with the facilities they need to dry-age meat on site, they can quickly lock moisture and flavour inside the meat. This process adds enhanced flavour to the end product which is also heavier in weight and retails at a higher price.

What did Royale do?

Royale engineers installed a fully bespoke dry ageing room, meat hanging rail system and cold room for smaller cuts of meat. The new system is equipped to handle the full process of butchering, dry-ageing and storage. This project required extensive construction of entirely unique components and systems - exactly the kind of challenging hallmark of the bespoke jobs Royale is known for.

Were there any challenges?

Providing any client with an entirely new solution is always challenging. From the rail system to secondary tailor-made dry-age cold rooms, the complexity of the task was heightened by the need for the chief engineer involved, Gary Millard, to travel regularly to the Isle of Wight in-person to consult with the client and manage the work.

When Royale engineers first went to the Isle of Wight we were faced with a empty barn. Royale supported the customer with all aspects of the build, from levelling off the floor to creating a steel structure strong enough to support the large meat hanging system being installed.

What were the results?

Just as Cheverton Farm required initially, they are now the proud owners of a system that allows them to handle the entire butchering and dry-ageing process from pasture to plate. This is a great win for a great business; by cutting out the middleman, Cheverton Farm has removed the need for outsourced butchery and storage that negatively impacted their bottom line and carbon footprint. The meat is also better tasting and heavier because the entire dry-ageing process now occurs more quickly and without the need to travel back to the UK mainland on a ferry.

When was the work carried out?

Our work for Cobbs Farm began in November 2018 and finished in March 2019. Tight deadlines and the need for a new fully customised system made every month interesting and engaging for our engineers.

What type of system was installed?

Cobbs came to us for a complete fit-out of their brand-new farm shop. The requirement included air conditioning systems, a general-purpose refrigeration and freezer room and a dry ageing room. Remote display refrigeration cabinets were also installed in customer facing areas of the farm shop.

What requirements did the client have?

Display chillers, air conditioning and cold storage formed a large part of Cobb’s requirements. As a retail store, it was vitally important the newly installed equipment was reliable, visually sleek and did not intrude into customer facing areas of the shop.

What did Royale do?

First off, an energy efficient air conditioning system was installed using custom pipework to connect to an external condensing that provides much better energy efficiency throughout the summer months. Display chillers were carefully installed into the shop area to allow Cobb’s to display products in a visually pleasing way. A tailor-made dry-aged beef room was built with a window that allows customers to see the products inside. A general-purpose refrigeration and freezer room was also built.

Pipework and cabling for all the equipment was hidden away where possible so as not to interfere with the sleek visual appearance of the farm shop’s customer facing areas.

Were there any challenges?

Pipework is often challenging, especially when so many different types of equipment are required within one retail space. This, together with tight deadlines, made this job slightly more challenging but our engineers completed it on time and to spec without any problems.

What were the results?

Simply put, a reliable and energy efficient system was installed that provides consistent temperature control and a positive the retail experience for customers. Great stuff.

Royale Refrigeration & Air Conditioning recently installed and commissioned a combination of plant on a new build extension near Reading.

Project consisting of new walk in cold rooms, freezer rooms, including full box build and controls solutions, bespoke Arneg display chiller using R407F refrigerant and on the Air Conditioning side Daikin R32 heat pumps.

If you need a contractor that can deliver on all aspects of your project then Royale is the business partner for your company, feel free to contact a member of the team at www.royaleref.com

Danfoss systems installed and commissioned in time and on budget, need a R404a refrigerant alternative solution, speak to the Royale team.

We can offer you plant from leading manufactures providing you with R407A and R407F options to name a few.

Large commercial projects we can offer R410a refrigerant solutions such as the Daikin Zeas application, different projects have different requirements, work with a business partner Royale who can provide you with all the options and guide you to the correct solution.

The Royal Oak in Yattingdon is a prestigious Berkshire public house providing customers with fine dining and traditional ales complete with guest rooms, the service here is exceptional.  This is why Royale Refrigeration took on the challenge to provide a bespoke cold room providing the design and build of a dual compartment cold room with inner freezer room all fitted within an existing old brick barn construction.   

Royale carried out full strip out and removal service of the old R404a refrigeration plant and cold room system, taking extra care to not damage the barn buildings fabric.  Followed by full new bespoke box build of dual compartment chiller and freezer room and the installation of Searle and Danfoss Optyma Mk2 refrigeration systems, providing energy efficient refrigeration systems with exceptionally quiet remote condensers which is critical due to the guest rooms located near to the plant. 

Just resin floor and shelving to go in and another project successfully carried out by the Refrigeration team at Royale.  

If you need a solution please do not hesitate to contact the team at Royale. www.royaleref.com

Commercial Cold Room



Works Carried Out: Year 2016

Contract Value: 9K


Royale’s scope of works, to size, design, supply and deliver, install and commission a new bespoke coldroom for a prestigious farm shop in Whitchurch, Hampshire.

Challenged by:

As part of our project we co-ordinated with onsite project management to accommodate their program of works during a barn buildings conversion into a prestigious farm shop.  The project management team required Royale’s technical knowledge of coldroom installation to accommodate the buildings new structural layout.  By designing a cold room for the specific space available.

What we did:

Upon receipt of the clients drawings, we went on to design, supply, install and commission new made to measure celltherm walk in coldroom complete with appropriate Searle evaporator and Danfoss condensing unit, cold room and refrigeration system fully leak checked and commissioned to manufactures standards. 

What Client Said:

The client is very happy with the result and is looking forward to working with Royale on future similar projects.


Project: Commercial Dry aged coldroom



Works Carried Out: Year 2016

Contract Value: 20K


Royale’s scope of works, to size, design, supply and deliver a new dry aged beef coldroom for renowned butchers based in Berkshire.

Challenged by:

As part of our project we co-ordinated with on site project management to accommodate their program of works during a ground and first floor refit which included the office working area. Royale’s scope of works was to design, supply, install and commission large new walk in coldroom to accommodate the clients criteria. The project management team required Royale’s technical knowledge of coldroom installation to accommodate the buildings new structural layout.

What we did:

Upon receipt of the clients drawings, we went on to design, supply, install and commission large new walk in coldroom complete with appropriate evaporator and condensing unit, humidity control, associated control panel and Himalayan salt wall to obtain the 30 day dry aged beef. We provided peace of mind for the life cycle of the plant, ensuring all pipe work was installed correctly, leak checked and commissioned to manufactures standards. 

What Client Said:

The client is very happy with the end product and it has been a feature on ‘Meat Trades Journal’ – the report can be reviewed HERE.