Earlier this month, I gave a short talk to our 4th Form Academic Society. Deciding on a theme was tricky, but since I’d recently worked on the school’s roll of honour – ensuring it was ready for our new memorial statue – the theme of ‘conflict’ seemed fitting.
I thought it would be interesting for our pupils to consider how old staff and alumni experienced war. I consequently picked five ‘treasures’ associated with Old Brightonians, and presented them as ‘mystery objects’. Using high-level questioning and critical thinking, the group successfully rose to the challenge, while learning more about the history of their school.
Throughout November, in celebration of Explore your Archive 2015, I will be using the blog to reveal some of these treasures to you.
The first item is a proclamation, signed by Old Brightonian Sir Harry North Dalrymple Prendergast. Prendergast led the Burma Field Force at the start of the Third Burmese War, in 1885–86. He was a pupil at Brighton College between 1849 and 1850, and a much celebrated soldier. The document triggered lively conversation between current pupils, particularly about the British Empire and how much the world has changed.