Pupils show community spirit working at museum

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A GROWING mission of community spirit among young people in Blyth has seen students helping out at a museum dedicated to the saint after which their school is named.

Students in Years 7 and 8 from Bede Academy took part in a ‘caring for the environment day’ by lending a hand at Bede’s World in Jarrow.

The museum is dedicated to the life and times of Venerable Bede, a monk, author and scholar who lived at the Abbey Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul in Jarrow.

The building features the ‘Age of Bede’ exhibition, which includes excavated artefacts from the historic monastery including stained glass, pottery, coins and stone carvings.

The students were given different tasks to complete including tidying up pathways, hedgerows and the herb garden, and repairing fences in the farm area, rebuilding the outdoor kiln and boxing up artefacts to protect them.

Chemistry teacher Dr Craig Sams said: “Every year we hold an environment day and the idea is to bring the students out of the academy and get them involved in what’s around them and learn at the same time.

“It’s also a great opportunity for the students to give something back to the community through looking after the environment.

“This is our first visit here but the students have been very enthusiastic and have thrown themselves into the tasks given to them.

“They have learned a lot, not only about how the museum operates and how important a well-cared for environment is to the museum, but also about Bede himself.”

Assistant director of Bede’s World, Pearl Saddington, said: “I think it is absolutely brilliant that the children have come along to help us.

“We are just coming up to our busy time and the museum has to be pristine and their work is helping us a great deal.

“The loveliest thing is that they are all doing this in the spirit of the monastery which is the community coming forward to help; their namesake Bede would be very proud of them.”

Student Fern Anderson, 13, of Blyth, added: “It feels really good helping the museum and it’s brilliant to be working outside in the environment too.

“I am going to bring my family and show them the work we have done.”

Other students from Bede Academy have spent several days supporting The National Trust at Wallington Hall this year as part of their Duke of Edinburgh Award.