PUPILS at Hatherden CE Primary School started the new school year immersed in the Second World War.

On September 12, youngsters from Shakespeare Class recreated the experience of being evacuated during the war.

Donning their period pieces, including identity tags and pretend gas mask boxes, the children followed in the footsteps of thousands of evacuees.

However, unlike their historic counterparts, they only travelled as far as the village church and returned home at the end of the day.

Among their activities, the children cooked a lunch of spam, corned beef hash and apple crumble which was typical of fare at the time.

They also packed a suitcase, wrote a postcard home and considered the impact of rationing.

One student James, who enjoyed the day with his friends, said: “Our Second World War day was a wonderful experience and the food was amazing.”

The day was part of the class’s learning for this term.

Class teacher Caron Hitchen said: “These types of activities give another dimension to lessons, bringing learning to life and enabling children to have a better understanding of events.

“This experience feeds their imagination and facilitates more creative writing as well as being fun.”

Later in the term, the children will be able to build on this experience when they visit Milestones Museum in Basingstoke to investigate Second World War memorabilia, which school staff hope will be another enjoyable day out for their pupils.