The History Department run some fantastic trips at Northgate. Will Sparkes reports on one of them:

‘On Friday the 6th October, at 7am, a group of Year 11 History students left school in two minibuses. The destination… London….

We arrived at around 9am at Stratford station, Mr Guy, Mr Darlow, Mr Macdonald and Miss Nichols gave us our tickets for the tube. A couple of stops later, we arrived at Bank underground station. We then had a 15 minute walk to our first stop. Our first stop, the Old Operating Theatre, is the oldest of its kind in Europe. It’s called a theatre for its amphitheatre like room and how all spectators were focused towards the centre where the wooden operating table is placed. It was formerly a church, then was used as an apothecary and a place to carry out open and public surgeries, used by young surgeons and aspiring doctors. The operating theatre was used from the 17th century to the early 19th century. When we first arrived at the Old Operating Theatre, we were given around 20 minutes to look around the exhibitions and see what a 17th century apothecary was like. We got to look at all the herbs and ingredients used in the treatments for these times (and some were pretty grim). After that, we got taken into the actual operating theatre. In here we were given a talk by our tour guide about the history of the operating theatre, its influence on medicine in Britain over the years and information about what happened in that room. Then, we got a demonstration of one of the operations that would often take place in there. After the tour of the operating theatre, we were taken to Guy’s Hospital which was a revolutionary hospital in the 18th century and is still a hugely key hospital set up by Thomas Guy in 1721.

We then caught the tube to the Imperial War Museum. First of all we went to the group eating area and ate lunch. We went to the Imperial War Museum to look at the World War I exhibition, to learn more about medicine and treatment of the injured, and how the war revolutionised medicine and treatment. Not only was the World War I exhibition extremely educational it also was very interesting and the majority of the group spent most of their time there.

After our visit to the Imperial War Museum, we got the tube back to Stratford and went to the Westfield Shopping Mall. Here we got the opportunity to get some food and go shopping for a little while. We then caught the train back to the station and left for home. All in all, as a pupil doing the medicine in Britain course, I can comfortably say that it benefitted me going on the trip. I have learned many new things that I can include in my work at school. I will never forget the experience.’