This week I was fortunate enough to take years 7, 8 and 10 history students to the Chalke Valley History Festival in Broad Chalke. All the years enjoyed the First World War trench experience and years 7 & 8 were treated to a talk by Martin Brown who has illustrated all the Horrible Histories books. His talk was really engaging and we were lucky enough to be given a signed drawing by him.
Students also really enjoyed the English Civil War encampments where they heard a live cannon being blasted and learnt some Morse code from the Royal Signals museum stand.
The Year 10s were privileged to hear from many leading academics including Dr Gareth Jones from St Anne’s College, Oxford University, who led a fascinating talk on the American Civil Rights Movement. Dan Snow, television personality and leading historian, led a talk on why studying history is so important (a particular highlight for me). The students were, as usual, a credit to the school and, despite the weather, excelled in their attentiveness and participation during all the talks and experiences.
My thanks go to all the members of staff and the community members who helped with the supervision of the students. Special thanks go to John Lancaster for his help in organising the transportation. I hope the students get the chance to experience this again next year as the whole experience really brought history alive.