The History Department has the following aims: every pupil shall be stimulated and enthused for the study of the past; they shall have a working knowledge of their own country’s history, an appreciation of other cultures and, living in a part of the world full of historical interest, shall have a burgeoning enthusiasm for local history.

Years 7-9

Year 7- Medieval Realms. During Year 7 pupils will investigate key events such as 1066 and the Plague, with a focus on personalities such as Richard I and King John, as well an exploration of everyday Medieval life.

Year 8-The Early Modern Era, with particular focus on the Tudors and Stuarts. Topics such as the Civil War allow pupils to explore our rich seam of local history.

Year 9- The Twentieth Century. Beginning with a focus on British society in the 1900s, then moving into the causes and experiences of WWI. Pupils will then look at the USA and Germany in the Inter War period.

During Years 7 to 9 essential skills such as source analysis and extended writing techniques are gradually developed.

GCSE course

The CIE syllabus covers aspects of the Twentieth Century (c1900-1991) with the key elements including the Causes of the Russian Revolutions of 1917 and the rule of Joseph Stalin 1929-1941, the causes of the Second World War, the Cold War 1945-1991 including case studies on the Korean War, Cuban Missile Crisis and Vietnam War, and the rule and collapse of the USSR. It is a wide and varied course which excites the senses and involves the study of some of mankind’s darkest periods as well as some of our greatest achievements.

A-Level course

See Sixth Form Curriculum here for full details of our A-Level History course.

Outside the classroom

During the academic year, co-curricular opportunities are offered, for example last year’s talk by ‘Dam Busters’ author James Holland and a recent visit to the Chalke Valley History Festival.


In the Lower School the department runs annual trips to the WWI Battlefields and local castle sites. The department also runs trips to support the IGCSE curriculum, by visiting European cities such as Prague and Berlin. The Upper Sixth visit London, including a guided tour of the Houses of Parliament and other relevant sites.

Battlefields tour
Castles trip