With this year’s focus on 1915, including the first gas attack at Ypres, the early departure of two young cricketers and the Belgian advance, Forms 9A and 9P used archival material to piece together the experience of war from the point of view of very different Old Breconians: Canon A E Donaldson (Master 1902-1955), who would have known almost every one of the 447 Old Breconians who served in the First World War; M. van Emelen, a Belgian refugee who became a French and Art Master at Christ College (Master 1914-1918), and Lieutenant C G R Hunter (School House 1907-1909), a professional soldier who was killed in Ypres.
Form 9Q researched the war service of the Cricket XI of 1915, almost all of whom served in the First World War. Their researches revealed that two of the cricket XI were killed in the war, including E E Arnott (School House 1913-1915) who left school half way through the cricket season to enlist. At the end of the session 9Q strikingly re-enacted the team photograph on the steps of School House.
Mrs Allen gave pupils an overview of key moments in 1915 and focused on the significance of the areas pupils will visit. Pupils gained a deeper understanding of the German advance on Belgium through the destruction of Louvain as described in an account of in The Breconian written by M. van Emelen, whose family arrived as refugees in Hay in September 1914.
As pupils learned about ‘the race to the sea’, the importance of Hill 60 and the Battle of St. Julien, they discovered more about the use of gas and the challenges of communication through the experience of an Old Breconian whose death was commemorated at Christ College earlier this term in Remembrance Dispatch No 4 on April 26th. Lieutenant C G R Hunter, whose battalion was involved in the first German gas attack, died in the open at Ypres because the trench to which his battalion had been ordered was already over-crowded.
Mrs Hope developed a medical theme in her sessions before reflecting on McCrae’s ‘In Flanders Fields’. Focusing on the Advanced Dressing Station at Essex Farm, which will be the first stop on M9’s visit, pupils retraced the steps of an injured soldier using pictures and sources. They followed the story of Lieutenant Alexis Helmer, whose death at the age of 22 is supposed to have prompted Major John McCrae to write his famous poem.
Christ College pupils have made an annual visit to the First World War battlefields for well over a decade but the centenary commemorations at Christ College have given the visits an extra special significance. Last year’s Battlefields Preparation Day enabled pupils to gain a deeper understanding of their experience of the battlefields. There is little doubt that M9 are expecting Battlefields 2015 to be equally memorable:
Visiting the Battlefields will be a chance for me to
Many congratulations to the winning and highly commended entries in this year’s essay competition. Pupils were challenged with a set of interdisciplinary questions and a time limit of one hour to display academic ambition, flair and question engagement. Topics ranged widely from our obligations to…Read on
On Monday 15th May 2023, Christ College Brecon hosted a wonderful evening from two rising young stars in the world of music. Anna Phillips was a music scholar at CCB and went on to receive a scholarship to study harp at the Royal Academy of…Read on
150 entrants took part in the second Christ College Brecon Mountain Challenge which took place on Sunday 7th May in the Brecon Beacons. For this year only it was renamed as the Coronation Mountain Challenge. The conditions were perfect for the three routes – 10,…Read on
Christ College Brecon has donated more than 500 items to its local food bank as part of its inaugural ‘Giving Day’. The occasion, which looks set to become a firm date in the school’s calendar, took place on Friday 5 May with children, parents, the…Read on
Last Wednesday, the winners of the East Wales Premier League ( Christ College 1st XV) and the winners of the West Wales Premier League ( Ysgol Ystalyfera) met at The Wern, Merthyr Tydfil RFC to determine the best Welsh school boy rugby team. This encounter…Read on
Two exceptionally talented scholars from the Royal Academy of Music are joining in concert at The Neuadd in Christ College Brecon on 15 May for a one-off musical medley combining harp and piano. Old Breconian and exquisite harpist Anna Phillips is returning to her former…Read on