Brecon Beacons YAC held a session in February looking at World War 1. We were at a brilliant place for this session as we were lucky enough to be invited to The South Wales Borderers Museum in Brecon. We had a new WW1 set of pictures to hang on our “Washing Line of Time” and then got everyone going putting stickers on a world map to show where the fighting had been and where the soldiers involved in war had come from.
Bill Cainan, the museum curator, brought out all sorts of exciting artefacts from WW1 for us to look at, trench armour, British and German helmets and a trench periscope. He also had a WW1 rifle for us to see and hold. It was very heavy and we all struggled to hold it in an outstretched arm for more than a few seconds. This was an exercise that the soldiers would have done. We had a slight diversion next as Bill asked for a volunteer to be a Zulu warrior. A Zulu warrior was chosen and equipped with a shield and spear, he looked fearsome and stood up well against a British Soldier.
We had a good look around the museum at all the objects and cabinets looking for answers to questions like “ Why is one of the soldiers wearing shorts?” or “ What was kept on the pouches on their uniforms?”and “Why is there a teddy bear on display?”
If there was any chance of getting bored or falling asleep at this point we were all soon wide awake as in another diversion from our chosen topic we all went outside to see and hear a musket being fired. Very exciting and very loud and very good.
We finished off with a chat about what we had found the most interesting and a look forward to our next event. Thanks to Bill at the museum for hosting us and entertaining us. We all learned something new.