A round-up on History trips – July 2018

3rd July 18

Highlights of recent trips: History

All of our 2nd Form took part in a walking tour of historical Wisbech on Thursday 15 June, as part of an end-of-term local history project. They visited the Octavia Hill Birthplace Museum, where they were given a guided tour by Mr Peter Clayton, who explained her role in founding the National Trust and creating “Happy Homes and Open Spaces” for ordinary people.

Links were made to Thomas Clarkson whose campaign against the slave trade is commemorated by the large spire-shaped memorial and to the Peckover family, whose house on North Brink is a testimony to their good business sense as Quakers.

The work of local photographers Lilian Ream and Samuel Smith was used to reconstruct the Old Market (with the now demolished Octagon Chapel) and new Market Square. And evidence of the original Wisbech castle was found in the lines of roads and subsidence experienced by later buildings.

Not surprisingly, the pupils also traced the history of Wisbech Grammar School from 1379 and the schoolroom above the parish church, to the Horsefair (1549-1898), the red brick boys’ school on South Brink and finally to its current location in the former girls’ High School from 1970. This introductory tour will serve as a basis for pupils’ projects that will involve re-enactments, reconstructions, presentations and models.

On Friday 29 June, 4th Form GCSE Historians visited IWM Duxford near Cambridge. The purpose of the visit was to see the American Airpower Collection which includes aircraft and other military equipment from WW1 through to the Cold War. Our pupils focussed on aircraft used in the Vietnam conflict which they have studied as part of their GCSE course. The collection is dominated by the vast B52 bomber which caused such terrible devastation in Vietnam. However, other highlights included the Huey helicopter, Phantom jet fighter and the SR-71, the world’s fastest plane. Pupils completed worksheet activities at the museum that will help to develop and broaden their understanding of their GCSE topics.