Todmorden High School column: Rediscovered log books are treasure trove for historians

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Todmorden High School staff have uncovered some wonderful artefacts from the school’s history.

A number of Headteacher’s log books have been found and some of the entries date back as far as 1940 up to 1989.

In the log books the Headteacher of each time has logged all sorts of information which ranges from the routine meter readings to new staff appointments, school trips and events and visits from the Minister of Education.

However the most fascinating reading are the entries throughout World War II.

Todmorden played host to a number of children who were evacuated from nearby cities and the children would attend the school during their time here.

The headteacher keeps a detailed log of the children who came in and out of the school during this time and also logs times and dates of air raid sirens.

The History department plan to now use the log books in lessons so that our students can relate their learning to the history of the school.

Mr Wardman explains: “As part of their GCSE History Controlled Assessment Students will be investigating the Home Front in World War 2.

“This covers the impact on life of such issues as rationing, conscription, evacuation and the threat and stress of air raids. The students will be using the logbooks as a piece of primary source material to relate what they have learnt about the home front in general to the specific experience of a secondary school in Todmorden.

“This will include the regularity of air raids, wartime shortages, male staff volunteering and being conscripted into the army - and the impact of evacuation on Todmorden as children and teachers from Bradford and even further afield arrived at the school.”