YHF Resources: Thomas Becket session

The teaching materials that were presented in November 2018 at Yorkshire History Forum are here for your use. York PGCE medieval religion lessons-FINAL

They are:

  1. An activity about religion in medieval life with plan, resources and subject knowledge for teachers.
  2. Two lessons about Becket, with resources and subject knowledge for teachers.
  3. A fully resourced lesson on the rivalry between York and Canterbury that was fueled by the Becket affair with an impact on the historic environment still evident today.
  4. A lesson on medieval pilgrimage with teacher plan, resources and subject knowledge update.

These materials were developed by the University of York PGCE historians 2017-18. To do this they worked with Jeremy Muldowney from York Minster and with Dr John Jenkins, University of York and other members of the Centre for Christianity and Culture. The materials were edited by Helen Snelson.



Borthwick Institute School Resource Packs

These are nice! The University oof York’s Borthwick Institute has produced these schools packs using material in their extensive archives. There are materials that can be passed on to English and Art colleagues too.

Of most interest to History teachers will be the pack on the Transatlantic Slave Trade, its links to Harewood House and the abolition debate. Local York teachers will find the Heslington Hall materials useful to flavour KS3 topics with local history.

@YorkClio and @Snelsonh had a fascinating day with the Bootham and Retreat Hospital archives – the results of that will be out soon – and you can find the Retreat archives online here too.

Madeleine Blaess’ diary: York woman in Nazi occupied Paris

This is a developing project. Madeleine Blaess was born in France, but grew up in Acomb and went to the Bar Convent School (now All Saints). She was trapped in Paris during the Nazi occupation and wrote a diary recording everyday life under occupation. She managed not to be interned, by pretending to be French. Two of her friends were murdered in Auschwitz. After the war she was an academic in Medieval French Literature at the University of Sheffield. The diary was revealed among her papers, which she left to the university when she died in 2013.  This was left to the University of Sheffield at her death.

The University of Sheffield are working on these papers and the diary is shortly to be publisned open access at White Rose University Press (which itself is something YorkClio folk should know about!) There is also a 35 minute film on its way.

This promises to be a fantastic way for York History and French teachers to connect a local story to a much bigger story that is commonly taught. We hope to develop the connection with this project further.

When did William conquer England?

Now there’s a big question for a Friday afternoon! Attached here are a couple of resources that you can use to help students decide. Hugh, who developed these, recommends a dramatic intro for each scenario:

  • Was it when he was out of breath on the top of Senlac Hill?
  • Was it as he sat smugly in the charred remains of York Minster?
  • Or was it…?

Students create a situation report for each scenario. When did William Conquer England

And, in case you need it, a crib sheet to get you started: MASTER – When did William Conquer England

YHEP is launched!

This week we have launched YHEP: the Yorkshire History Education Partnership 

It is intended to be a site for drawing together, celebrating and promoting history subject-specific ITT and CPD. YorkClio is, of course, a fantastic example of Yorkshire based partnership in action. You can follow on Twitter @YHEPnews and a Facebook group is arriving next week. Meanwhile, we hope Yorkies are enjoying Residents’ First Weekend despite the drizzle.

Black abolitionists and slave-owning compensation in York!

How much do you know about black abolitionists campaigning in the UK against slavery? No, neither did we until we came across this great mapping project on @twitter! Mapping black abolitionists’ speaking tours in the UK There are several people who came to speak in York. Some are hard to place, but three were in what is now the Fulford School catchment area!

In addition, there is now a map that shows local peoplewho were, now highly controversially,  compensated for their ownership of slaves by the British government.

World War One in the local area free resources

We are so lucky in York to have active and inspired local history societies. The Clements Hall Local History Group have had a lottery grant for their local World War One project. They have used it so brilliantly! The research they have done has all been published online – though there are also some hard copies of certain booklets. We can share it with you here: Clements Hall LHG World War One resources This site really is worth a look for all history teachers, but especially those around York. You will find films about a zeppelin raid and conscientious objectors. There are first hand accounts from soldiers, sailors and airmen. The role of women is explored. There is detail about how local churches, schools and organisations got through the conflict. There is also a lovely section on the Rowntree memorial Park. You can see the Quaker influence in the memorial text and it would make a lovely intro to the mood with which many greeted the founding of the League of Nations.

This park and the adjoining playing fields were given to the city by Rowntree & Co. Ltd to the memory of those members of the company’s staff who at the cost of life and limb or health and in the face of inconsiderable suffering and hardship served their country in her hour of need. Many were inspired by the faith that this war might be the end of war – that victory would lead to an enduring peace and to greater happiness for the peoples of the world. The creation of the League of Nations will be a fitting crown to the faith and hope of the men who have fought and a true memorial to their endurance, heroism, comradeship and sacrifice.”

Do have a look elsewhere on the site for other nice local history resources that would be useful for a KS3 history club.

Fulford, Fishergate and Heslington Local History group are also tracing all the men on four of their local war memorials. They have also done some work on the military buildings in their area. Here is their link: FFH Local History Group WW1

We are really grateful for all the time, effort, enthusiasm and skill that has gone into putting these resources together.

WW1 military hospitals in York

Here is a useful resource about World War One military hospitals in York.  It’s been put together by Fulford and Fishergate Local History Group. The Mount School was used on the same terms as Bootham and I think they might be updating this, but it gives some useful pics and maps for students about how York linked to the casualty system. Might be useful for KS3 or KS4.



Norman York Minster

Here are a selection of photos taken of the Norman parts of York Minster that may be useful resources for classwork. Descriptions of what they are are underneath.  If you need information about York Minster and church history across any period do contact Alex O’Donnell from the Minster learning team via alexod@yorkminster.org. The team will be happy to help with staff knowledge updating and/or work with students from Key Stage 1 through to A Level. They have a lot of information on the Minster in the Tudor Reformation period that may be very useful for some of us.

The Doomstone: this would have originally been on the front of one, or possibly both, of the Norman York Minsters. It would have given a clear message to worshippers about what awaited them if they did not lead a godly life and that they needed the church. There would also have been a depiction of heaven, but this is lost. It would have been brightly painted. If you look carefully you can see devils and the mouth of hell as a cauldron. There are also toads emerging from nostrils!

The remains of a statue of the Virgin and Child is early Norman. It may have been defaced at the Reformation, or in order to use it as core stucture material.

There are two lovely examples of Norman pillars. One of them has no top and so you can clearly see how the pillars, while beautifully faced, were packed with rubble.

The weathered figures are probably apostles and they would have been on the outside of the Norman cathedral(s).

Why two pictures of brick walls?  Well, the first is built of millstone grit. It’s re-cycled Roman stone. The Minster was, and is, built of local Tadcaster limestone, whereas the Romans used gritstone for their forum, which was on the site of the Minster. Gritstone is tougher than limestone and the Norman builders took full advantage of all the Roman remains in the area to use the gritstone to build strong foundation walls. Clever folk those Normans! The second wall picture shows herring-bone pattern. It is typical of Anglo-Saxon building and reminds us that Norman masters had Anglo-Saxon workmen building their cathedrals and churches.

The top of the column is richly carved and still has some remains of red paint on it. It is not unlike a rough classical column and the Norman architecture style is known as Romanesque in the rest of Europe.

The stained glass is Norman, which makes it some of the oldest that survives. It would have been part of a window in the Norman cathedral(s).

The small piece of stone (in the plastic box!) is actually very valuable. It is a fragment that shows how Normans painted their churches white and then painted on red false mortar lines. This is a rare surviving fragment of what would have been a very common scene in Norman England. Possibly the white painting made buildings stand out as very rich and important.

The Minster Learning Centre staff can explain how the Norman cathedrals developed with their handy model!