First World War guided tours for History students

Date Posted: 21/05/2015

Photo Credit: Mark King

Children of all Key Stages can learn about World War One and its global impact by attending nationwide Blue Badge guided tours of First World War heritage sites.

We may have just passed the 100 year anniversary of the start of the First World War but its impact still resonates to this day. To commemorate ‘the war that changed the world,’ teachers can book a variety of bespoke Blue Badge guided walks for History students from all Key Stages.

The guided walks are available for private booking and aim to provide an out-of-the-classroom experience tailored for History students of all ages.

The walks can complement visits to Western Front battlefields such as The Somme, memorials like the Cross of Sacrifice at Bedford House Cemetery in Ypres, or they can be organised to take pupils to places affected by events on the Home Front including air fields, government buildings, city streets and residential areas.

For Key Stages 1 and 2, the guided walks focus on the consequences of the war on British domestic life such as the changing status of women, the campaign for universal suffrage and the importance of rationing.

For Key Stage 3, the programme focuses on the transformation of the British Empire, women’s suffrage, and the shifting balance of political and economic power.

The Blue Badge guides can also alter the walk’s content to suit each school’s requirements if requested.

Below are three examples of First World War guided walks in London:

The Last Journey of the Unknown Warrior

This guided walk follows a route from Victoria Station to Westminster Abbey. This was the ‘last journey’ taken by the cortège in 1920 that bore the unidentified body of one of the 300,000 British soldiers who fought in the First World War but have no known grave. Students will walk past landmarks including Buckingham Palace and Whitehall to the Abbey where the body was welcomed by a guard of honour.

The Empire answers the Lion’s roar

This walk goes from Green Park Tube Station to the Hyde Park Corner war memorials and celebrates the achievements of Britain’s colonies that fought in the First World War.

The tour will focus on the contribution of the troops from the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC,) India, the Caribbean, Africa, Canada and Newfoundland. The pupils will also see the Commonwealth memorials and certain areas of ceremonial London including Constitution Hill, the Victoria Memorial, the Mall and St Jame’s Park.

Zeppelin!

Students who attend the Zeppelin! guided walk from Holborn to Liverpool Street Station will see the enduring signs of destruction from the first German air raid on the night of 8th September 1915. Pupils will learn about the damage caused by Zeppelin L13 and relive the twenty minutes of terror which came directly to the doorsteps of London families.

Teachers of Key Stage 2 History may find this walk beneficial as the some of its content directly addresses the National Curriculum’s focus on the topic of the changing power of monarchs. The walk will discuss how the House of Windsor was, in-part, formed as a result of the impact of German air-raids on civilian targets.

For more information, visit www.WorldWarOneWalks.com

School Travel Organiser's Guide