Services provider Vertas Group Limited has acquired Bury St Edmunds-based business, Churchill Catering Limited, in a bid to establish itself as a ‘national contract catering provider.’

The deal will see Vertas – which currently focuses on the education sector – expand into the commercial and leisure market, providing its services for an additional 50 sites across the country.

With Churchill Catering managing director, Tony Nicholl, having announced his retirement, he will be replaced by his son Stuart Nicholl who will continue to run the ‘business as usual’.

Tony Nicholl said: “Vertas is a business with a strong team which will add to the depth of our business offer, including purchasing and resource planning.

“From clients perspectives, nothing will change. The rest of the Churchill Catering team will continue to support the work they do for clients with their usual flair and determination.”

Vertas chief executive, Ian Surtees, added: “We are delighted to be part of the longer term strategy of Churchill Catering and will support the superb management team to continue to deliver first class services to customers.

“The Vertas Group directors and senior management team are visiting all the new sites over the coming weeks with Stuart Nicholl from Churchill, to introduce ourselves to staff and further understand the needs of the business.”