On Monday, 12th March, despite the seasonal drizzle, all Year 7 students, along with some Year 8s, enjoyed a Tudor-style day at Hampton Court Palace, in preparation for their new history curriculum topic. Built for Cardinal Wolsey on the banks of the River Thames, the palace was an ideal location for our students to learn more about the lifestyles of the Tudors – from the high and mighty to the lowly kitchen servants. They even had a chance to meet up with King Henry VIII for a question and answer session in one of the royal apartments.
Year 7 students, Simon and Rexsiya described their experience at the palace as being: “Fantastic!” “We both learnt lots of new information about the Tudors and were amazed at how different their lives were to ours.” The students were given a tour of Hampton Court’s kitchens and saw how much more labour intensive they were as well as what types of food were popular at the time of Henry VIII. Rexsiya was particular interested in how expensive sugar was, but how they were very skilful in making decorations with it. Simon was surprised that grilling food on a rotary spit over an open fire was common practice back then, as he imagined that that technique was more modern.
Special thanks to Hampton Court Palace Education Department for hosting our visit and for providing such expert guides who made our students and staff so welcome. As well as guided tours, Year 7s also had the opportunity to find out about the constant upkeep of this important site and learn so much about the life of the Tudors, especially how the wealthy entertained themselves, and how the poor were worked so hard to keep the palace running.
Thank you to Mr Harvey for organising the visit, and to all the members of staff who accompanied the students on the day.