13 February 2020
‘Frontline Living History’ came in to school today to deliver a workshop to GCSE History students on the British section of the Western Front, trench warfare and medicine.
An authentically-uniformed Regimental Medical Officer and Royal Army Medical Corps Orderly led students through a wide range of important topics including:
• Conditions in the trenches and how they impacted upon the health and wellbeing of soldiers, and how they affected the wounds, recovery and treatment of casualties
• Common trench illnesses including lice infestation, trench foot, PUO
• Wounding and disease agents, and their relative significance
• The introduction and effectiveness of personal protective equipment such as shrapnel helmets and gas masks
• The roles of the different medical staff working on the Western Front
• The Casualty Evacuation Chain from Battlefield to Blighty
• The legacy of Great War battlefield medicine – how experimentation, improvisation and innovation developed medical techniques and technologies leading to better care for Great War casualties and for everyone since
Real pieces of military equipment and clothing were available for students to handle, and volunteer Kyle was dressed as a young soldier would have been 100 years ago, as an attack was re-enacted, with classmates acting as Stretcher Bearers coming to his aid. Students really benefitted from an interactive workshop and engaged with the subject material.