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Year 8 leavers' programme continues with a trip to Belgium


As the leavers’ jam-packed itinerary continues, this week our Year 8s spent three days in Belgium. 

There has been much laughter but also much to learn and reflect upon in the past few days in Belgium.

Day 1

In the morning, they visited Bellewaerde Theme Park and enjoyed the many rides available. 

Then in the afternoon, they visited the Tyne Cot cemetery to remember and pay their respects to the British war dead and feel the scale of the war.

In the evening Toby and Freddie represented our school by laying a wreath as a mark of respect for those boys from Winchester College who lost their lives in the Ypres Salient from 1914-18. I want to thank the families of boys who shared information about the lives of loved ones who fought and died around Ypres. Today at Bellewaerde we were within 2 miles of where one relative was fatally wounded and I was struck by how different their experiences were.

Day 2

Waterloo day! Our first museum was the HQ of the Duke of Wellington for the battle. The boys saw how a rifle was loaded and fired and the room where the battle report was written on the 19 June 1815 by Wellington.

The boys then visited Napoleon's HQ before the battle where we had lunch. The best museum was last and it did not disappoint! 1815 was a modern and highly informative experience with a 4D film that thoroughly entertained us all.

In the evening, we treated the boys to a restaurant in town, where they enjoyed their meal in the beautiful surroundings of the Old Bank.

Day 3

Our final visits were to two special places, firstly, the German cemetery of Langemark where 44,000 men are remembered and the design of the defeated Germans was very different and sombre. After that, we went to the dressing station at Essex Farm where John McCrae wrote his famous poem. Finally - the ferry home!

Thank you to all the staff for their help on the trip and for the boys for being such good company!

(For Year 8 parents, please go to the Photographs tab on My School Portal to see all the photos.)

Joy Bailey
Head of Year 8 and Head of History


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