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Education Students in Gosport Uncover Impact of World War 1

It is a great privilege to be working in education with the ‘Services Six’ team of students at Gosport and Fareham Multi-Academy Trust. They are enthusiastically helping us develop and pilot our ‘digital global citizen’ blended learning curriculum.

We spent the first part of Autumn term investigating the impact of World War 1 on people’s lives in Gosport and globally across the world.

We travelled with The Earth Museum’s World War 1 Explorer to discover stories from as far away as China, India and New Zealand; and researched some of the names of people remembered on the Lee-on-the-Solent War Memorial, who went to fight or care for the wounded and never came home. We walked to the Haslar Royal Naval Cemetery close to the school and searched for the stories of a few brave men and women remembered there, using mobile phones and QR codes. Seeing so many graves really helped us realise what they did for us all those years ago. A great education experience.

We stood in remembrance at the grave of Beryl Northfield, a Wren aged 19 years old, who died in Gosport during WW2. We read out loud this poem written by Margaret Postgate-Cole:

The Veteran

We came upon him sitting in the sun,

Blinded by war, and left. And past the fence

There came young soldiers from the Hand and Flower,

Asking advice of his experience.

And he said this, and that, and told them tales

And all the nightmares of each empty head

Blew into the air; then, hearing us beside,

‘Poor chaps, how’d they know what it’s like?’

He said.

And we stood there, and watched him as he sat,

Turning his sockets where they went away,

Until it came to one of us to ask

‘And you’re – how old?’

‘Nineteen, the third of May’.

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