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Netley pupils recreate life in First World War trenches in exhibition

PUBLISHED: 09:00 17 December 2014

From left Chadni, nine, Holly, 10, Erion, nine, Efaz, 10, with teaching assistant Melanie Hall. Picture: Polly Hancock

From left Chadni, nine, Holly, 10, Erion, nine, Efaz, 10, with teaching assistant Melanie Hall. Picture: Polly Hancock

Archant

The sounds of gunfire and trench warfare exploded in the ears of visitors to a primary school’s immersive exhibition on the First World War.

Pupils at Netley Primary School in King’s Cross reenacted life on the battlefield for parents and guests on Thursday with drama performances and tours of the school’s new campus, where children’s work covered the walls.

Topics ranging from war art, to how landscapes changed during the war years, to how families were affected, were explored by pupils of all ages for the exhibition of work they have produced since the start of term in September to commemorate the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War.

Every guest was given a new identity at the start of the show, taken from the real names of those who lived or died during the war from 1914 until 1918.

At the end of the exhibition, a replica cenotaph revealed if their namesake had survived the war.

Rowena Ward, personal assistant to the headteacher, said: “It really brought it back home.

“It was a celebration of the children’s work but it was also a sombre occasion and we didn’t want to forget it was a serious subject.”

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