On Wednesday 16th January, we went to Steam! After a rather long journey, we arrived and were all in awe when we saw the first train, the North Star, designed by George and Robert Stephenson.
Our first activity was all about the evolution of the railways in England, mainly that of the Great Western Railway. We learned about Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Robert and George Stephenson and Daniel Gouche, all engineers involved with the designing of railways and locomotives.
During this activity, we learnt about the roles of navvies – these were the men who did all the hard work, the digging, the pick axing. They were able to use dynamite to blow up land too! They were paid in beer and bread; occasionally they would get money tokens too.
We then learnt a few things about bridges and why they are used, how they are designed and we even got to build some! These will be very useful when we begin designing our own bridges.
After lunch, we had time to explore the museum. We were able to learn about the workers, the importance of the railways during wartime and how the women continued the work that the men had started. Not only did we learn all of this, but we were able to walk under a train, drive a train and work in a control centre. All that in a day!