History was brought to life in a blaze of wigs, waistcoats and water as Year 2 at Bourne Elsea Park CofE Primary Academy were transported back to the 17th Century with a visit from Partake Theatre. Our new topic sprung into life as we were joined by Samuel Pepys, who read us exerts from his diary and helped us to get a hands-on experience from the year 1666.
Wearing velvet waistcoats and flowing skirts, we became glamourous ladies and gentlemen as we rode horse back around the park and met King Charles II, who donned a baldric, periwig and moustache!
We visited Thomas Farriner on 2nd September 1666 and watched as he went to bed after a busy day in his bakery on Pudding Lane. Suddenly the ashes in the fire sprang back to life and spread through the streets. Using red and yellow ribbons, we created our own fire dance to show how the flames grew in speed and size.
We were challenged to join in with the efforts to put out the fire, racing to pass buckets of water to the burning buildings, but still the flames grew bigger and bigger. We helped the Londoners dig holes to hide their precious belongings, and thought it was really funny that people used chairs and tables as boats to sail down the Thames to escape the fire.
As the flames died down, we took a tour of London, discovering the new, stone buildings that were built as London rose again from the ashes.
It was an amazing experience to kick start our new topic, ‘London’s Burning…Fetch the Engines’. It is so fantastic to be able to bring alive this major historical event in such a hands on way!