A Year Behind the Scenes at Rochelle Canteen

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Year in Review

A Year Behind the Scenes at Rochelle Canteen

Over the autumn, we handed a pair of disposable cameras to the team at Rochelle Canteen for them to document the everyday happenings at the restaurant during a year unlike any other.

Through curfews, lockdowns, Tier 3, closings and reopenings, the team at the restaurant (famously founded by Melanie Arnold and Margot Henderson) kept going.

We caught up with General Manager Kate Towers, who led the team on the floor throughout the pandemic. Here, she shares a few of her thoughts on a rollercoaster ride of a year.

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"2020 has been surreal. I'm not sure there is one word to sum the year up but this is the first one to jump to mind."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"The toughest part of this year has been the uncertainty of it all and the yoyo-ing from open to close for the whole industry. We were all revved up and looking forward to a busy December, and to have that cut short with no notice is frustrating to say the least."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"I've been lucky to work with a strong and dedicated team, who've all worked really hard and always with a laugh."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"To have a sense of humour in all of this is essential. And working in the beautiful walled garden of Rochelle helps too!"

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"I think everyone at one point has had a struggle with their mental health, the never-ending uncertainty of it all. Many of us suppress our stress and anxiety and it can come out in peculiar ways."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"Trying to be open, checking in and supporting each other where possible has hopefully helped."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"After being closed for a few months during the first lockdown, it was great welcoming back friendly faces and our regulars."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"The customers have been incredibly supportive and that's helped hugely."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"My favourite part of each working day is seeing our regulars and being part of the team. Everyday you meet loads of different characters, it keeps things interesting for sure."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"Also, I love the noise and general buzz of working in a restaurant."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"It's been a very hard year for hospitality, but the whole industry has rallied, from suppliers, to staff members and support systems. It's been blow after blow, but everyone is coming back stronger which is really inspiring. People have been flexible and understanding, that in itself has been rewarding."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

"It's an incredibly supportive industry to work in. You feel the love! For next year -- stay positive, work hard and enjoy it day by day."

All photos by Rochelle Canteen for Resy

Year in Review

A Year Behind the Scenes at Rochelle Canteen

Rochelle Canteen

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