Somme Trip 2020

13/02/2020 | Sarah Bradley

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Somme Trip 2020

History Students from Year 9 travelled to France last weekend to follow in the footsteps of soldiers who fought at the Battles of the Somme and Vimy Ridge in World War 1. The trip was taken as part of their study of Warfare and World War 1.

On Friday, students travelled to the Vimy Ridge Visitors Centre where they learnt about this important battle in 1917. Canadian soldiers took the lead at Vimy Ridge and students visited the tunnels that were built by the Canadians under the German trench positions. Students were able to walk through the frontline trenches on both sides and see for themselves the short distance between the two.

Students also visited the Vimy Ridge Memorial. This stunning memorial dominates the skyline in the area and is a fitting memorial to the Canadian fallen of World War 1.

The Battle of the Somme was the focus on Saturday as students visited key sites associated with this infamous battle including the Loughnagar Crater and the trenches at Beaumont-Hamel. Students had just finished studying the Somme in the classroom so the timing was perfect for the students to travel to Albert.

The two highlights of the visit to the Somme were probably the Thiepval Monument to the Missing Soldiers. This monument remembers those 72,00 soldiers who died at the Somme but whose bodies have never been recovered. Equally poignant was the visit to a Germany cemetery at Freicourt where the German fallen are buried.

The two days gave the students a chance to turn classroom experiences into living memories including the chance to walk through a front line trench and imagine what it was like to go ‘over the top’ on the 1st July 104 years ago.