It was a walk down memory lane for parents at St Martin’s Academy last week when they attended a retro-themed evening full of school day nostalgia.
The Back to School dinner took place in the main hall and invited everyone to celebrate the best – and worst – things about school life. Guests were greeted with a gallery of school photographs and enjoyed trying to match up the chubby faced youngsters to their party pals.
After the school bell sounded, a very efficient Miss Leese took the register and especially enjoyed asking for attendees by their childhood nicknames, favourites included Cannonball, Ace, Whizz, Big Bird and Moon Cat – you know who you are!
One noticeable difference from everyone’s school days was the absence of spam fritters or lumpy custard from the menu. With chef award-winning Harry Marquart of Liverpool’s Izakaya restaurant in residence guests knew the traditional menu of spaghetti hoops; ham and chips, roast beef Wednesdays and pie and mash would hold some surprises, and they certainly weren’t disappointed!
Highlights included delicious miniature cannelloni in a creamy tomato sauce served in custom made St Martin’s tins; a flavour-packed and creative take on a classic scotch egg and booze-soaked delicate fruit trifle – again served in individual St Martin’s tins.
Stuffed guests were entertained with table games including having a go at answering some recent GCSE questions; matching up anonymous school life memories to their fellow diners and sharing their ‘when I grow up, I want to be…’ childhood dreams with each other.
Iconic scenes from classic TV shows including Neighbours – Scott and Charlene’s wedding, naturally; Grange Hill and He Man played on the big screen and helped to transport everyone back to a time when picking a new pencil case from Woolworths was your biggest worry.
The appropriately chosen soundtrack of 1980s and 90s hits was performed fantastically throughout the evening by a local talented guitarist.
The night was the first of its kind at St Martin’s Academy, however the school plans to work with independent businesses like Harry’s in the future and to provide fun and innovative ways for parents and the local community to use St Martin’s facilities.