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Marching in honour of those who fell in the First World War

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SCHOOLchildren marched their way through Southsea to mark 100 years since the start of the First World War.

Hundreds of youngsters from Mayville High School each walked a mile along the seafront from Speaker’s Corner up to the War Memorial on Southsea Common.

The students, who ran in groups of 100 to mark 100 years, were raising money for Help for Heroes and the Royal British Legion.

Once they arrived at the War Memorial, they picked a fallen servicemen to dedicate their efforts to and wrote their name on a paper poppy at the cenotaph.

Fergus Bonar, 14, is in Year 9 and came up with the idea.

‘It’s to show our dedication for the people who fell during the war,’ he said.

‘We are learning about the Great War in history. It’s hard to believe that boys the same age as some of us were fighting in the trenches.

‘I can’t imagine my friends and I being in that situation.

‘It feels good knowing that we are raising money for good charities.’

Gabby Lashmore, 15, a Year 10 pupil, said: ‘This is to show respect to the soldiers that fought in the First World War. It’s good because it gives the children the opportunity to get out and understand what it’s all about.’

Annabelle Lewis, 14, also in Year 10, added: ‘It helps give people a better perspective of what the First World War was like and what the soldiers gave for our country, and why they did it.’

As part of the event, students also recreated the famous Christmas Day truce football match, where soldiers from both sides put their differences aside and played together.

Headteacher Linda Owens said: ‘It’s about remembering those who died in the First World War 100 years ago and it’s about raising money for today’s heroes.

‘It’s important that young people remember the history of what’s happened and what people have given up for them in the past.

‘They are very grateful and they do know, and that’s why they are here running and raising money.

‘It was successful. It was so lovely to see all the pupils here participating.

‘They had a bit of fun but at the same time remembered what it’s all about.’

 

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