HEAD BACK TO SCHOOL THIS HALF-TERM – VICTORIAN STYLE! - Monday, 27 January 2014

History comes to life at Royal Armouries Museum at Fort Nelson this February half-term (February 17 to 21) as Victorian children’s lives go under the spotlight.

Tread in the footsteps of the Fort’s 19th century schoolchildren by heading back to the classroom – as well as sampling Victorian games and crafts.

The Fort is an ideal setting for the fun, interactive sessions as soldiers were billeted at the Fort during the 19th century, along with their families and children. As the Army relied on servicemen’s sons as a valuable source of recruits, they invested heavily in youngsters’ education and operated a classroom, alongside the living quarters.

Fort operations manager Nigel Hosier said, “Children are fascinated by history and how young people lived in bygone years and our half-term programme aims to bring the past to life in an exciting and meaningful way. Unlike purpose-built museums, Fort Nelson is a historic building in its own right and is an ideal setting for telling local history stories at a place where it actually happened.”

Aimed at the under 12s, the hands-on-history sessions include:

Daily gun firing – To ensure the Victorian-themed week goes off with a bang, museum staff will fire a 16-pounder 19th century gun every day at 1pm on the Fort’s parade.

Dating to 1873, this British rifled-muzzle, loading gun was a heavier version of the 9-pounder issued to the Royal Horse Artillery and saw long service with the Artillery Volunteers. The 16-pounders were usually based at forts, and could be used for field operations against an attack.

Fort Nelson is home to the national collection of artillery – the big guns – including many fine examples of Victorian firepower. The museum includes new, state-of-the-art galleries and a 19-acre site to explore, complete with underground tunnels.

The Fort is open daily and museum admission, gun firings and parking are free. The half-term activities are priced at £4 per child, giving admission to all three sessions.

Fort Nelson is home to the national collection of artillery – the big guns – including many fine examples of Victorian firepower. The museum includes new, state-of-the-art galleries and a 19-acre site to explore, complete with underground tunnels.

For more information and the latest news about Fort Nelson and the Royal Armouries:

Royal Armouries website
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Notes to editors

To find Fort Nelson, follow the brown Tourist signs from the M27. The Fort is open seven days a week, from 10am to 5pm.

Download the PDF press release.