Pupils mark Parliament Week by debating WW2 at Hednesford War Memorial

Pupils being addressed at Hednesford War Memorial

Published: Friday 10th November 2023 | 1.34pm

Pupils from St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School in Hednesford have been supporting Parliament Week (6-12 November) by attending a workshop about the Second World War (WW2) and debating its consequences at the fitting venue of Hednesford War Memorial.

The event was able to take place following a successful application made by The Friends of Hednesford Park to the Speakers Fund, managed by the UK’s Parliament.

As part of the pupil’s involvement, they have been following a story walk installed in Hednesford Park which continues to the end of the month. The walk picks up on themes from the curriculum the school is following about the Second World War. A circular route, it takes around 20 minutes to complete. It offers QR codes to collect which can gain rewards on Cannock Chase Council and Inspiring Healthy Lifestyle’s Cannock Chase Can health and wellbeing app.

Today’s walk undertaken by the pupils and the workshop they attended managed to cover different aspects around the war and how it affected people at the time. Through discussion, the walk and workshop was able to help young people reflect on the people and places around Hednesford that make them happy and what they would be willing to fight for if they were faced with a war in their own lives.

Following today’s activities and debate, the young people’s views on war, where they live and what they value and wish to protect will all be gathered and incorporated into an 

interactive map of Hednesford. It will be available in print and on the Cannock Chase Can app in 2024.

Joining the school pupils at the workshop today and on the walk were Amanda Milling MP, representatives from Hednesford Town Council, Cannock Chase District Council, Staffordshire County Council, and various partner organisations. They helped the pupils understand the process of government from the local level to Parliament as part of their Second World War focus and how major events are debated, discussed and decisions taken.

Councillor John Preece, Portfolio Leader for Parks, Culture and Heritage at Cannock Chase Council, said: “Coming close to Remembrance weekend and the ongoing situation in Gaza and the Ukraine, this was an important opportunity for some of our young residents to understand and debate a key moment in our history and how war makes you think about the importance of democracy, what you treasure and what is ultimately worth protecting.

“In this, Parliament Week, it was pleasing to see that the councils, our MP and partners were all willing to give their time to help the next generation understand the challenges we all face and to be able to debate them without fear or consequence.” 

To find out more about the Cannock Chase Can app and to download it, go to www.cannockchasecan.co.uk  



Addressing the pupils from St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School are (l to r): Councillor Darrell Mawle, Cannock Chase Council, Councillor Alan Pearson, Chair of Hednesford Town Council, Councillor Josh Newbury, Deputy Leader of Cannock Chase Council, Councillor Johnny McMahon, Staffordshire County Council, Amanda Milling MP for Cannock Chase, and Robert Plumb, representing the Royal British Legion Hednesford Branch.

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