Schoolgirls reenact evacuee experience

Pupils receive talk from former pupil and evacuee, Elizabeth Scott, at wartime picnic, as part of World War II history lesson

By Natalie Wilkie

Year two girls from Newcastle’s Church High School and Central High School, recently took part in a series of ‘Evacuee Day’ activities, in a bid to learn about wartime history.

Dressed as evacuees, the pupils took part in a wartime picnic, where they were offered the chance to sample similar foods to those eaten during World War II, so they could gain a glimpse of the wartime experience. The schoolgirls also had the opportunity to view a ration book and a gas mask.

Head of Church High junior school, Jill Brown, said: “In 1939, 50 Church High girls were evacuated to Alnwick Castle during World War II and we felt it was important to host our own Evacuee Day, to give our girls an insight into their own history.

“The Year 2 girls from Church High and Central High have been learning about the war in their history lessons this year and we felt it was important for them to see first-hand some of the experiences people faced.”

As part of their history lessons, the pupils had the opportunity to build their own Anderson Shelter, and were given a talk by former Church High student, Elizabeth Scott, who was 11 years old when the school was evacuated to Alnwick Castle. She spoke about her experiences as an evacuee and her time living at the castle, where the school stayed until the war ended in 1945.

The long history of both Church High and Central High Schools are being celebrated throughout the year as they prepare to join together to form Newcastle High School for Girls, this September.

Head of Church High School, Joy Gatenby, said: “We’re always looking for new and exciting ways to bring history to life for our pupils and, maybe one day, one of our girls will be telling another generation of Newcastle High School girls about the exciting year when their school was created!”


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