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History in Action: Corporal Dickie WW1 Interactive Talk

Published on 20/11/23

Year 9 student Cleona tells us all about the History in Action talk.

On Wednesday 6 September, Corporal Dickie visited Year 9 to give an interactive talk on the equipment, uniforms and experiences the German and British soldiers had in World War 1.

He equipped volunteers from the year group in the coats, bags and hats made for the soldiers and showed how they changed over time with a humorous twist, and we discussed why and how the designs evolved and how countries used their available resources to adapt to the circumstances. He also described the problems the soldiers faced, such as trench foot, and the hardships they endured, alongside some fascinating facts, like how they washed and avoided chlorine gas that was released in the trenches.

Corporal Dickie also demonstrated how the bombs and missiles the soldiers carried were designed, and also their flaws - like how the more powerful bombs were harder to keep a safe distance from after setting them off. Corporal Dickie then told us about the creative solutions that were implemented in shortages of supplies and explained what the soldiers carried - their food, utensils, weapons and other essential items and how they managed to survive in the trenches.

This glimpse into the life of a soldier was both captivating and witty, and Corporal Dickie showed us what it was like to live in the trenches and fight in World War 1.