'This has been an incredible honour' – Schoolchildren visit battlefields to mark Armistice centenary
PUBLISHED: 17:19 13 November 2018 | UPDATED: 17:34 13 November 2018
Students from Finborough School embarked on an adventure to the continent to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War.
Leaving at 5am on Saturday, November 10, the 20 students and staff journeyed to France – stopping first at Newfoundland Park, the preserved part of the Somme battlefields, followed by a visit to the monument at Thiepval.
After a night in the city of Arras, the students had the opportunity to join the remembrance service in Ypres at the famous Menin Gate.
The children joined tens of thousands of people marking the special historic moment, and had the honour of taking part in the procession – with student Shannon Warren laying a wreath on behalf of the school alongside a host of European dignitaries.
The students then visited the preserved trenches at Sanctuary Wood before returning to Suffolk.
The children chosen for the honour were the winners of a history competition for which they had to produce a piece of work centred on the ‘Great War’.
The entries ranged from in-depth studies of family history to a full-size trench and dug out created in one pupil’s garden.
Headteacher Steven Clark, who joined the group, said: “This has been the most incredible honour; I am deeply affected by the emotion and historical significance of this day in Ypres and cannot express how proud I am of our students who represented their school and country so beautifully.
“This was an outstanding representation of the power of remembrance and how important it is for our children to learn about the cost of war and the incredible sacrifice by so many.
“Their aspirations for lasting peace across the world was an poignant reminder of the power of a youthful outlook, something we must always value and build upon.”