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Monday, 24 November 2014

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History of Furness Abbey in Barrow will be brought to life for pupils

THE History of Furness Abbey in Barrow will be brought to life for school children with the launch of an education pack.

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ENTHUSIASTIC Hannah Croskery, deputy head at Dalton St Mary’s Primary School, at the launch of English Heritage’s new education resource for Furness Abbey courtesy of English Heritage

English Heritage has created a “first of its kind” curriculum-matching kit for teachers of primary and secondary children.

The important historic discoveries of the first bishop’s crozier to be unearthed in Britain in more than 50 years and a gemstone ring at the abbey led to the creation of an online and downloadable teaching toolkit.

The kit aims to enhance the relevance of historic sites to teachers and enable them to match the demands of the changing National Curriculum. The pack addresses the artefact finds and the reasons behind the conservation work at the abbey, founded by Stephen, later King of England.

Zoe Spring, education visits officer, said: “We’re really excited about this resource. It is a new way for us to communicate with teachers and schools across the area.

“When pupils visit, there is a real wow factor in their response to the extensive 12th and 13th century ruins and we have focused on bringing the stories and visual elements to the fore. This was a magnificent and affluent monastery and we feel the new kit makes it easy for teachers and pupils to exchange with us in new and interesting ways.”

More than 800 pupils visited the abbey last year and this is expected to rise with the return of the crozier and ring, which go on permanent display this year. Teachers attended a launch event on Wednesday.

Hannah Croskery, deputy head of Dalton St Mary’s Primary School, said: “I feel really excited about working with English Heritage at Furness Abbey. I loved coming to the abbey as a child and want to pass that enthusiasm on to pupils in school.

“I can really see how we can practically use the new schools pack, from nursery right through to Year Six and what a great resource this and the abbey is. You can see it, touch it – it really brings history alive.”

Gill Jepson, of Furness Abbey Fellowship, said: “There is so much in the pack to get kids’ imagination and interest going. I have had so much enthusiasm for this amazing place all my life and my main aim is to give kids that same enthusiasm.”

The new resource coincides with the start of daily opening at the abbey from April 1. The abbey is now open at weekends from 10am to 4pm.

Have your say

Even though the English Heritage website (you know, the people it's in care of) and the Furness Abbey Facebook page say 'Manor Road, Barrow in Furness, Cumbria LA13 0PJ' ;)

Posted by Elusive on 10 February 2014 at 23:56

Surely if you want to teach the history of Furness Abbey you should get your facts right and teach them about the history of Furness Abbey in Dalton.

Posted by I.S. on 10 February 2014 at 21:12

View all 5 comments on this article

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