Small Heath School takes up The Gastro Card Challenge

8th March 2011

Budding Jamie Olivers and Gordon Ramsays will be given the chance to shine when a Birmingham school launches a Create a Restaurant project.

Two teams of students at the Small Heath school will learn all about the restaurant business, taking in everything  from choosing a location to designing the interior, creating the menu and putting forward a business plan to make sure it is a financial success.

The project is the idea of The Gastro Card, the Midlands leading dining card, which will bring designers and chefs, as well as other people involved in the restaurant trade, to talk to the students and offer expert advice.

One of the founders of The Gastro Card, Trevor Land, says that the idea behind the project is to show youngsters the pleasures and the pitfalls of working in the restaurant trade.

“The youngsters will start from the absolute,” he explains. “We have already taken them to a newly-finished building, just a shell that could be put to a variety of uses. They will then be given the plans and, with the help of an expert designer, will decide how to shape it into the kind of restaurant they want to create.

“They must also come up with a detailed business plan. What kind of food they want to serve, what sort of customers are they trying to attract, how they will source the food and how they will market the restaurant.

“We at The Gastro Card love the restaurant business and we would be delighted to see many of these youngsters go on to become successful restaurant owners. However, we also want to show them how much hard work is behind making a business successful.”

One of the teachers involved in the project is Dawn Tate. She says: “We are all very excited about this and the students can’t wait to get started. It is a brilliant idea because it really gets them involved in so many different things. Some are keen to get involved with the design part while others are itching to draw up some menu ideas. I think we also have a few who fancy themselves as the top chefs of tomorrow.”

The Gastro Card hopes that if the Small Heath project goes well they can roll out the idea to create a competition between various schools in the region.