Clad in slick RAF uniforms, Year 6 gathered in one of the grand rooms of the Bentley Priory Museum. It was time for their Battle of Britain workshop.
To begin the session, the boys were given the opportunity to share what they had already learnt about World War II and they were asked challenging questions such as:
Which country’s invasion triggered World War II?
Why is it difficult to attack an island?
What’s the advantage of carrying out an air attack before carrying out a naval attack?
Next came an almighty challenge. The boys were asked to step into the shoes of those who worked at or worked in conjunction with Bentley Priory during one of the most crucial periods of the war.
Whether they were allocated the role of ‘Plotter’, ‘Filterer’ or ‘Radar Operator’, it was necessary for them to communicate with one another and work as a team in order to determine whether an air threat was friendly or hostile. Given that the boys had to use a combination of grid references, the phonetic alphabet, symbols and compass points, they had to really concentrate and support each other in order to complete the task.
Bathed in sunshine, the boys were able to explore some of the grounds during a relaxing lunch break. The afternoon session brought a tour of the museum where there was a great focus on individuals such as Hugh Dowding and the men that we refer to as ‘the few’.
Have you ever sat in the cockpit of a Spitfire fighter plane? No? Then perhaps you shall have to follow in Year 6’s footsteps and visit Bentley Priory yourself…