We’re taking a trip down a memory lane: Minster starts heritage programme for pupils

Turning back the clock: (from the left) Nancy White and volunteers Audry Heap, Betty Honour and Anne Honour

Turning back the clock: (from the left) Nancy White and volunteers Audry Heap, Betty Honour and Anne Honour

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HALIFAX Minster is giving children an insight into its historic past.

A schools programme is being rolled out featuring two trails, Monastic Life and the Reformation, and Life in Victorian Halifax – A Child’s View.

Nancy White, assistant curate at St Mary’s Todmorden, has been appointed minster education officer and is working with volunteers to deliver the programme.

The Community Foundation for Calderdale has given £2,680 to fund start-up costs and the programme will then be self-financing through participating schools.

Rev White said the minster wanted an education programme linked to the national curriculum to support schools and bring history “to life” for children.

A small order of Cluniac monks are believed to have built the first church early in the 12th century.

Rev White, a former secondary school teacher, said children would be dressing as monks and learning about their lives which included bread making, illuminated writing and chanting.

The Reformation and dissolution of monastries is also included.

During her research of Victorian Halifax Rev White came across the Collingwood family who lived in the parish.

Children will learn about that family’s lives and in particular Sarah Collingwood, who was a weaver.

They will also experience a Victorian schoolroom and sing 19th century folk and hymn music.

“We are still developing the Victorian programme and have had a couple of schools in,” said Rev White. “The hope is schools will find a place easy to access and have a quality experience.”