Students get up close with WWI memorabilia thanks to Honiton auctioneers

PUBLISHED: 17:30 06 December 2017 | UPDATED: 09:10 11 December 2017

Students check out an old bomb and soldier's helmet.

Students check out an old bomb and soldier's helmet.

Archant

Chilcotts Auctioneers, of Silver Street, arranged a visit to the school with history teacher Mrs Anderson.

A student models a wartime helmet. A student models a wartime helmet.

A Honiton auctioneers has helped students from the town’s community college understand the reality of World War One by showing them war memorabilia.

Chilcotts Auctioneers, of Silver Street, arranged a visit to the school with history teacher Mrs Anderson.

Liz Chilcott spoke to groups of year eight students about the objects and what they meant for soldiers at the time.

Included in the items taken with her was an original map displaying the position of trenches in Guillemont, one of the locations of the Battle of the Somme, and a carving made by Germans interned in South Africa.

A student models a wartime helmet. A student models a wartime helmet.

Liz said: “We currently have a good selection of items from the First World War ready to go to auction, and we felt it was a good opportunity for the students to see some of the things they’ve been talking about in class.

“Being able to look at and touch objects from the actual time can really help bring the history to life.

“Knowing that a map or a water canteen were used by real soldiers, many of whom would have perished in the war, makes it all more real.”

After Liz’s talk, the students were able to take a closer look at the objects - trying on helmets, handling a bugle and trench art – sculptures made by soldiers to while away time in the trenches.

Students try on helmets dating back to World War One. Students try on helmets dating back to World War One.

They also got the chance to look closer at medals and pictures, including a war photograph album showing original shots taken in France.

The items that gained the most interest from students were a rare cutaway WWI period Coopers patent 20lb aerial bomb and an original German helmet with a spike.

Liz added: “The helmet is made from leather and the Germans realised quite early on in the war that this didn’t offer much protection, so they changed to metal helmets.

Some of the objects will be sold at Chilcotts upcoming auction being held on December 2 at its Silver Street saleroom, adjacent to Honiton Community College.

For more information, and to view auction catalogues, visit www.chilcottsauctioneers.co.uk

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