History handled

I was interested to read of government plans to introduce British history and national identity to the curriculum in recent issues of The TES. At English Heritage, we encourage use of our historic environment for education. Understanding the events and influences that have shaped Britain is vital if we are to appreciate the rich and diverse environment we live in.

We offer a range of "discovery visits" at many of our sites across England and aim to engage education groups with our nation's heritage, bringing history to life and giving it a modern relevance. Teachers tell us that the hands-on experience pupils have on these visits helps them to understand the social context of history taught in the classroom. It is vital that these visits be encouraged and not overshadowed by a pressured curriculum, not to mention lack of resources and health and safety fears. Experiencing our diverse heritage at first hand can spark a passion for history.

Tina Corri Head Of Education, English Heritage, London

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