This year, the Vandyke History department raised money for the Royal British Legion through the selling of poppies. 2020 marks the 100 year anniversary of many of the famous cenotaphs and places of remembrance created all over the country. Vandyke students marked the event with the usual remembrance assembly.
Year 9 students, Caidan Flynn, Emily Thomas, Keira Allen, Otti Stanford-Richardson, Henry Phillips and Kieran Lane all attended and honoured the moment by laying the wreath provided by Vandyke school. Year 13 students, Ben Davage and Kaya Karatus then read the poem ‘for the fallen’ by Laurence Binyon. As ever, Vandyke students were a credit to themselves and the school in attendance of the ceremony and students across Vandyke observed the minute silence with great respect.
Mr Bodo and Miss Podmore also led an assembly on remembrance and the effect of the British colonial troops in the First World War. Miss Podmore spoke of Khudadad Khan, an Indian soldier from the Punjab (now modern-day Pakistan) who was awarded the Victoria Cross for bravery due to his heroic efforts to save his fellow troops from slaughter at the battle of Hollebeke in Belgium in 1914. Mr Bodo then spoke of the example of Vimy Ridge, where in 1917, Canadian troops, against all odds, managed to capture the strategically important trenches and fortifications at Vimy Ridge, a German stronghold since the start of the war. Both stories emphasised the positive impact of the British colonies and are stories often forgotten in the First World War and as part of the Remembrance process.
A final well done to all students who purchased a poppy; this is a tradition that is vital to keep going and the enthusiasm and purchasing of poppies by every year group was superb. A final total of the money we raised will be counted and communicated to all students in the coming weeks.
Mr Bodo, Team leader of History