Louth school commemorates the centenary of the First World War

Pupils in front of a Douglas DC3 Dakota

Pupils in front of a Douglas DC3 Dakota

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Students at Cordeaux Academy spent an inspiring week learning about the First World War last week, in commemoration of the centenary.

There were trips out, visitors into school, commemoration services and a number of special events - and even normal lessons were given a First World War twist.

Pupils visit Chatsworth House. EMN-140714-144003001

Pupils visit Chatsworth House. EMN-140714-144003001

Year Seven students visited the Lincolnshire Aviation Centre at East Kirkby, which holds the personal stories and artefacts of many airmen from the Second World War. The Lancaster NX611 is the centrepiece of the museum and regularly performs for the public. The groups also took part in a variety of interesting activities and gained an increased knowledge of life during the First World War.

Year Eight students enjoyed a tour of the Museum of Lincolnshire Life on Tuesday (July 8) where they learned about life in the trenches, and the changing roles of women left at home. A highlight of the tour was the Mark IV Tank known as ‘Flirt’, which saw action at Cambrai and Arras.

Meanwhile, some Year Nine students were given a guided tour of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight at Coningsby, home to Spitfires and a mighty Lancaster bomber. Some other students from the same year group took a trip to RAF Scampton. Standing nearby to the Red Arrows as they took off, and visiting the grave of Guy Gibson’s dog, were two of the highlights of the visit.

On Wednesday (July 9), 41 Cordeaux students and five members of staff visited Chatsworth House in Derbyshire, where they had a guided tour of the house and learnt about its history since the 16th Century.

The time capsule is buried in the Memorial Garden, to be unearthed in 70 years time. EMN-140714-144025001

The time capsule is buried in the Memorial Garden, to be unearthed in 70 years time. EMN-140714-144025001

During the Second World War, a girls’ school from Wales was evacuated there, and one of the dormitories they would have used has been recreated for visitors to experience. Another part of the house has been devoted to an exhibition commemorating both World Wars, with displays of photos, poems and artefacts.

After the tour the students were able to explore the fantastic gardens, where they saw the huge cascade waterfall, tried to lose each other in the maze, and got caught in the spray from the Emperor fountain.

A little closer to home, within Cordeaux Academy itself, students were visited by members of the Army and the Royal Air Force, the British Legion, local Cadets, and veterans.

Themed lessons throughout the week included English students who studied war poetry, mathematics students who studied code breaking, and PE students who were put through their paces in drills which were hosted by members of the Armed Forces.

The week concluded with a service of remembrance around Cordeaux Academy’s Memorial Garden, which was created by construction students. Students buried a time capsule in the garden, filled with photos from the week in addition to items and photos from around the academy. The time capsule is due to be unearthed in 70 years time!

Principal Peter Kubicki, who will be leaving Cordeaux this month after 13 years in the job to start a new life in Qatar, said: “We hope our students will recognise the debt of gratitude that we owe to those who fought in the wars, and take something away from these important lessons of history.”