18 February 2020

Sixth Form trip to Berlin

A group of Sixth Form students headed to Berlin in the Michaelmas break for a study trip.

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The interdisciplinary trip to Berlin for students of History and German was both enjoyable and academically valuable, providing historical and cultural insight into the fabric of such a diverse and vibrant city.

Despite the bitterly cold temperatures of Berlin in December, we covered a lot of ground (both figuratively and literally) in exploring the historical landmarks of the city, such as the Holocaust memorial and the Reichstag. We found the walking tour fascinating as we got to see the physical remnants of history come to life in the city, such as the bullet-scarred walls of East Berlin from the Battle of Berlin in 1945.

Above all, our visit to the German Resistance Memorial Centre was a particularly poignant and moving experience. Dedicated to the remembrance of the German resistance movement, we amazed to discover the vast numbers of German people who made such immense sacrifices in the fight against Hitler. One touching exhibition told the stories of those who hid and saved the lives of Jewish people from persecution. Being able to associate the historical facts to the photographs and stories of individuals was deeply moving, as it offered personalised accounts of those who were willing to sacrifice their lives in the interest of others. With the museum housed within the resistance movement’s base, it was a deeply emotive and chilling experience to be at the place where the leaders of the resistance movement were arrested and shot in 1944, and to pass through the rooms and passageways where they worked.

This, with all the other knowledge and cultural experiences we have gained from the trip, have contributed to our understanding and appreciation of what is a truly incredible city.

Joshua Davies and Aoibh Downey, L6

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