CHILDREN have enjoyed their very own film premiere as part of a project to unite school pupils with war veterans.
Youngsters from Stamshaw Junior School in Portsmouth had the opportunity to interview veterans and make a film documentary, called The Story Exchange Project.
The children learned of people’s experiences of the Second World War right up to conflicts in Afghanistan happening today.
And yesterday the Year 6 pupils were dressed in their most glamorous frocks and posh suits to walk down the red carpet for the official premiere at the National Museum of the Royal Navy at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.
Bethany Ward, 10, said: ‘It was really fun and fascinating because we learnt things that we didn’t know before. We learnt what it was like back in the old days to fight in the war.’
Maisie Creasey, 10, added: ‘It was a really fun project. It gives us good skills to talk to people and ask them questions.
‘It was really interesting to hear about what people’s lives were like.’
And Hannah Begun, 10, said: ‘It’s been an amazing experience. I have never done anything like this before and I don’t think I will have the chance to do it again.’
The project was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund as part of the museum’s ‘HMS – Hear My Story’ galleries project which will focus on the 20th and 21st Century Navy.
Brian Williams, 64, who served in the Royal Navy during the Falklands war, said: ‘It was difficult in some ways because of all the memories that it evoked. Some of the questions were quite deep about personal feelings so it was quite telling.’
Tony Snelling, 89, served in the Royal Navy during the Second World War.
He said: ‘I found it very rewarding. They had great interest in the navy and in a sense I was very proud to have had the opportunity to discuss my experiences in the navy during the Second World War.’
Deborah Hodson, learning manager for the museum, said: ‘It was a way of bringing together local veterans and local school children to understand each others stories and circumstances.
‘It helps the veterans feel more part of the community and maybe better understood by those of use who haven’t faced conflict or life in the services.’