Boys in the Prep School are starting to discover the stories behind the end of WW1 and the birth of the RAF, both of which occurred 100 years ago this year.
Three exciting displays in the Nash’s and Inky libraries are helping to bring to life the events of the time; introducing the boys to the first RAF aircraft, the pilots and ground crew (both men and women), as well as the heroes of the sky, such as Albert Ball VC and the infamous Manfred Van Richthofen, ‘The Red Baron’.
Closer to home, the boys can explore the impact that our Old Bedfordians had during the conflict, such as Captain (later Major General) A C Fuller of the Royal Engineers’ Signal Service who designed the ‘Fullerphone’: a portable DC line Morse telegraph. Transmissions from the Fullerphone were practically immune from being overheard, which made the system at the time very suitable for use in forward areas.
Line Communication Equipment, Fullerphone Trench S: British © IWM (COM 176)
The boys have heard the heroic tales of Sub-Lieutenant Arthur St Clair Tisdall, Major George Wheeler and Major Montague Moore from Mr Silk in Assembly. All three men were awarded the Victoria Cross for their bravery and devotion to duty. Throughout the year, we will be sharing more stories of Old Bedfordians, including the some of the very first pilots in the RAF in 1918.
A great selection of fiction books are also available to the boys to help them to understand the conflict, including ‘Biggles’ and ‘Stay Where You Were and Then Leave’, as recommended by our librarian, Mrs Lumley-Wood.
Did you know?
Soberingly, over 470 Old Bedfordians died in WW1, which equates to more than the total number of boys in the Prep School today.