Geography Fieldwork on the Cherhill Downs

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On Wednesday 24th October, the LIV (Year 7) took to the Cherhill Downs to investigate the ‘Chalk Landscape’ and the Iron Age Hill Fort settlement. It was a glorious autumnal morning, bright with a light mist still hanging over the downs. The girls worked well discussing the key features of the landscape, filling in their handouts and consolidating the work completed in class. Having completed research on the Lansdowne Monument and the White Horse, they were able to see both features and talk about the history of each. We stopped for break at the base of the monument in the now warm sunshine, with spectacular views all around us.

The girls enjoyed their snacks, as did Mrs Hayes' dogs! The group then quickly found an opportunity to let off steam running up and down the small banks and undulating ground at the top of the escarpment, with shrieks of laughter. We then moved on to look at the remains of Oldbury Iron Age Hill Fort, discussing the advantages and disadvantages for the early settlers living on this exposed site. Positioning ourselves in one of the man-made ditches, the girls had an opportunity for some hill rolling, which they thoroughly enjoyed. The group then moved on to look at the slopes that dip away from the steep side of the escarpment, discussing in particular the land use of this area. The escarpment was busy with others enjoying the incredibly sunny weather. We watched a group of paragliders take off and take advantage of the thermals over the White Horse; it was an impressive sight. Having completed work at the top of the downs, we walked back down one of the spurs and made our way to the A4 where we picked up our coach and headed back to school. We returned slightly dirtier than we had set out, but happy to have completed a successful morning’s fieldwork on the Downs. Well done LIV.

Mrs Sally Hornby