site logo

Tea at the Riley

Monthly ‘intergenerational’ tea parties held at Bolton School to allow older people in the local area to connect with Sixth Form students and enjoy a pleasant afternoon out.


Older people in the local area are invited to Tea at the Riley, a monthly series of tea parties at Bolton School which are organised by Sixth Form students. Guests are served a selection of sandwiches and traditional or themed baked goods for their afternoon tea. The food is made and served by Sixth Formers, who also provide friendly conversation. Every month there is a different form of entertainment, from musical performances to interesting talks.

The overall goal is to give guests an enjoyable and memorable afternoon at Bolton School.


Sixth Form students at Bolton School Girls’ Division were inspired to create Tea at the Riley in the 2014-15 academic year. The monthly tea parties, held in the School’s Riley Sixth Form Centre and completely free of charge to all guests, are a way to reach out to the older generation within the local community.


Bolton School hosts Tea at the Riley in the Leverhulme Suite on the ground floor of the Riley Sixth Form Centre.

The School’s food preparation rooms are used by Sixth Form students, and occasionally younger pupils, to make sandwiches and baked good for the afternoon tea which is served to guests.

Teaching staff occasionally provide entertainment on a voluntary basis, giving talks about their subject.


Around 30 guests attended the first Tea at the Riley in October 2014, and since then the project has continued to be popular with older residents in the local area.

Pupil Involvement

Students in Years 12 and 13 are involved with organising and running each Tea at the Riley event. They volunteer their lunchtime to set up the event and cater to guests’ needs, serving their food and drinks and chatting with them. Those with free periods after lunch continue to assist with Tea at the Riley into the afternoon.

Younger pupils from the Junior Girls’ School have in the past helped with preparing scones and serving guests.

Entertainment is often provided by the School’s musicians, both in the Sixth Form and the Senior Girls’ School. The Junior Girls’ Choir and children from Beech House, Bolton School’s Infant School, have also provided entertainment.

Students in the Sixth Form, and sometimes younger age groups, also volunteer their time to make the food which is served at Tea at the Riley.


This ongoing project runs from October to June each academic year, with Tea at the Riley events taking place once a month.