School dinners, as satirised so accurately by The Simpsons (zoo animal meat, creamed corn, grease vats, et al), were a grim reality for most of the population of the UK at one time or another. Your typical school dinner involves either chips and beans, or various pieces of unidentified meat and grey boiled vegetables. Dessert was usually some kind of cake or pudding served in a blue plastic bowl with the option of custard or chocolate gloop from a truly gargantuan metal jug. Drinks were water or milk (water served in reusable plastic beakers).

Some amazing foodstuffs were sporadically sighted in school dinners which crop up nowhere in the outside world, such as the delectable cheese wheels. Scotch eggs and roast potatoes also featured heavily. (I once put away an entire buffet plate of roast potatoes on a school trip. And I'd do it again!) School dinners are a great example of skirting at the very boundary of health and safety laws, and flatly contradict the healthy eating thread of the national curriculum. And of course, they fund the machinations of that mysterious sect, the Dinner Ladies.