Last term in their History lessons Year 7 were studying the Norman Conquest and the Battle of Hastings. This term the focus was on Castles themselves and how they developed and changed between 1066 and the 1400s. To explore these topics further pupils recently enjoyed an historical trip to Warwick Castle.
Throughout the day pupils participated in an ‘Attack and Defence’ workshop where they learned how armies would have lay siege to a castle such as Warwick. They also learnt how the castle equipped itself for these threats with the deep moat, portcullis, battlements and murder holes or meurtrière. This is a hole in the ceiling of a gateway or passageway through which the defenders could fire, throw or pour harmful substances or objects, such as rocks, arrows, scalding water, hot sand, quicklime, tar, or boiling oil, down on attackers.
Pupils also had the chance to have their own battle as they re-enacted the Battle of Hastings in the great hall complete with armour and swords. Evie Mossop & Liv Thomas, played Harold Godwinson, and Ben Lord & Edward Smart dressed as William, Duke of Normandy and thoroughly enjoyed leading their armies into battle.
Later in the day everyone ventured into the castle grounds to watch ‘the sport of kings’ as birds of prey flew above the crowd. Everyone was amazed at the accuracy of the kite as she caught the prey 19 times out of the 20 it was thrown.
History Teacher Mrs Houghton-Brown said, “The trip to Warwick Castle helped the children immerse themselves in medieval history. To walk through the grounds, stand next to the coats of armour and be overlooked by the magnificent paintings gave the pupils a real sense of what the residents 400 of years ago might have felt and the challenges they might have faced.”