Taverham High School students cook up a treat as they take over Caffe Italia restaurant in Norwich

They say running your own restaurant is very hard work, but five year 11 students from Taverham High School have proved that it is achievable.

The pupils – Rose Betts, Will Bryenton, James Harding, Conor Clarke and Stokely Howard – are studying hospitality and business studies and a task included in their hospitality course was to plan an event.

They decided to take up the challenge to run their own restaurant for a night and this resulted in them being able to secure sole use of Caffe Italia, off Timberhill, in Norwich.

Two of the team worked in the kitchen and the remaining three as waiting staff. Although assisted by Pete, the owner of Caffe Italia, and his son, Richard, as the chef, the students planned and prepared every aspect of the event, which was a three-course meal, and even organised the entertainment, provided by Lily Betts and Callum Smith.

There were an array of meals; a Mediterranean starter platter, followed by a choice of home-made burgers, hunters' chicken or pasta with meatballs and a choice of lemon tart or banoffee pie for dessert.


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The evening kicked off at 6pm with drinks and nibbles, and then the guests enjoyed the sit-down meal at 7pm. Each course followed a session of entertainment and the night concluded at 9pm.

Paul Rapley, assistant head teacher at Taverham High, said: 'For a group of 15 and 16 year olds to show skill and initiative to organise such a successful event shows just one example of the astonishing talent in our young people. I believe that while exam success is important, this event will never be forgotten by our students. It just goes to show that if you give young people the opportunity, they can produce exceptional outcomes.'

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Is your school organising an event? Contact reporter David Freezer on 01603 772418 or david.freezer@archant.co.uk

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