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Bradon Forest goes to Dover!

Earlier this month Year 11 historians visited Dover Castle as part of their GCSE studies looking at the ‘History Around Us’ unit. The castle provides students with a hands-on experience of how a historical site has shaped the landscape over 2000 years. Students were keen to learn how the site has developed from the Roman Empire into the Medieval era and right through to the Cold War.

First on the list was the Roman lighthouse or ‘Pharos’ which stood tall and proud (with a little decay) and once used to dominate the Eastern hill of the site in order to guide Roman galleys on their journey to the British Isles in the 1st Century AD. Following this, students had a grand time marching up and down the stairs of the Great Stone Keep, built by the formidable Henry II in the 12th Century and one of Britain’s finest examples of splendour and political power to this day. After a little light lunch (a little too light for Mr Kershaw who had an unfortunate incident with a Dover seagull as it deftly pinched his succulent Chicken Breast sandwich that he had purchased that morning) the students embarked on a further study of the site which took in the development of tunnels which were originally built to garrison soldiers during the Napoleonic war. Other uses of the tunnels have included a WW1 command post and now an Evacuation from Dunkirk exhibition. The final place of special interest was the Dover Castle gift shop which proved very popular with students as purchases ranged from bouncy balls, English Heritage pencils and fetching English Heritage bandanas.

All in all, the students were a delight to guide around the site and many have come back with very positive comments about the sheer grandeur of the site and what it has to offer. Students praised the inspirational direction and snippets of information offered by the excellent staff; Miss Mazelin, Mrs Loxton, Mr Kershaw and Mrs Stevens.

Well done to everyone and make sure you remember this visit when writing about Dover Castle in your June exams!