Children take over chocolate factory in new Channel 4 documentary series

When I Grow up sees seven to nine year olds taking control of businesses as party of a social mobility experiment

London, UNITED KINGDOM:  The logo of Britain's Channel 4 television station is pictured at the company's headquarters in central London, 18 January 2007. Carphone Warehouse, the main backer of Channel 4's reality television show 'Celebrity Big Brother,' pulled its support Thursday as complaints about alleged racist bullying spiralled and criticism mounted. Mobile communications retailer the Carphone Warehouse said it had told broadcaster Channel 4 to remove its name and branding from the programme with immediate effect, saying it did not want to be associated with it.  But Channel 4 chief executive Andy Duncan said Thursday they "could not say with certainty" that the comments directed at 31-year-old Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty were racist or whether they stemmed from "broader cultural or social differences". And he rejected calls for the show to be pulled off air. AFP PHOTO/CARL DE SOUZA  (Photo credit should read CARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images)

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A chocolate factory, an estate agent and a celebrity magazine are handing control of part of their businesses to a group of children for a new Channel 4 documentary series.

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When I Grow Up will see a group of diverse seven to nine year olds taking over part of the companies for a week, “in the hope that their brief experience of adulthood will open their eyes to a bigger world”.

The experiment, which will see the children working at Hello! Magazine, Hunter’s estate agent and Montezuma’s chocolate factory, aims to change the way the young people perceive themselves and encourage them to aim high.

“Through the kids’ remarkable take overs we will see how in modern Britain, our children’s ideas of where they sit in the social pecking order are already beginning to be shaped by the age of seven, and how quickly these can be altered through their sudden entry into positions of real power and responsibility in worlds that many of them never knew existed,” the official blurb for the series reads.

And they won’t be taking it easy when it comes to work either. The children will apparently be “cutting six figure property deals, creating and selling new product lines in a factory and taking over a section of Hello!, interviewing celebrities and even meeting royalty’.

“We are delighted to work with Optomen on this innovative series. It tackles a big issue – social mobility – with wit, warmth and purpose, and the final result is both heart-warming and revealing in equal measure,” said Alf Lawrie.,Channel 4’s Head of Factual Entertainment.

“Making the films has been a massive leap of faith for both the bosses, and the children and their parents – none of us knew quite what would happen,” Nick Hornby, Executive Producer Optomen, added.

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When I Grow Up will air on Channel 4 in autumn 2018