On the sunny morning of Friday 7th July, 14 very excited Year 7 & 8 EAL students boarded the school minibus with myself and Mr Pennington for the start of their tour of typical Essex landmarks.
Our first stop was Finchingfield, the most photographed village in England. We strolled around the village looking at all the sights. There were lots of old thatched cottages and Mr Pennington explained how they were done and how each thatcher had his own design. The windmill was our next port of call and it was interesting to learn how the huge mill wheels ground the corn. Although the water is called the ‘pond’ it is in fact a ford which, before the bridge was built, had to be crossed. Then we went for a fried English breakfast at Bosworth’s Restaurant. Everyone tried the food and many ate things totally new to them. One student remarked that she had never had cooked tomatoes before and another said that he had never tried fried eggs!
Our next stop was Colchester Castle and great fun was had by all when they put on the Roman clothes, helmets and shields. The students couldn’t believe how the soldiers could fight in such heavy chainmail and helmets. There was a thatched hut showing how the poor Romans lived and someone from our group found a hand grinding mill which they recognised as being a smaller version of a windmill. The jewellery that was found from the area was beautiful and emeralds were present in most of the rings. After getting some souvenirs from the shop we all sat in the grounds and had ice creams and saw the fabulous fish in the Italian pond.
Then it was on to Maldon Promenade to see the sailing barges and the river. The lake boasted many types of water birds and the students were fascinated with the variety, some they had never seen before. We walked right to the end of the quayside to see the statue of Byrhtnoth, a slain Saxon warrior who fell in the Battle of Maldon against the Vikings in 991AD and we had many of the students posing beside him. We even found some crabs in the mud.
We had a fabulous day and everyone agreed that it had been so interesting learning new and exciting things about our lovely county of Essex.
Mrs Aves, Library Manager