Trip to Ypres supports GCSE studies

Pupils and staff laid poppies on the graves in the war cemeteries
Pupils and staff laid poppies on the graves in the war cemeteries

Young historians have travelled to Belgium to show their respects to soldiers died in the First World War.

Students from years nine, ten and 11 at The Towers in Upper Beeding were taken to Ypres last Saturday to see the land that was once battlefields

Students from The Towers walking in the muddy trenches in Ypres

Students from The Towers walking in the muddy trenches in Ypres

Headmistress Clare Trelfa said: “The group visited war cemeteries, where pupils and staff laid poppies on the graves, row after row of them, neatly positioned and respectfully maintained.

“They also walked in the muddy trenches, feeling very sombre and grateful to the soldiers, who had endured such degrading conditions for so long.

“At The Menin Gate three of our pupils, whose relatives were buried there, took part in the Last Post Ceremony. They laid a wreath, on behalf of The Towers, under the gate in front of hundreds of onlookers, definitely a once in a lifetime experience.

“The whole day was extremely moving but the mood lightened somewhat with a visit to a chocolate shop – an absolute must before the journey home.”

The trip gave the girls the opportunity to study illnesses, injuries and treatments in the First World War – now part of the GCSE syllabus – using actual sources from museums on the Ypres Salient.