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Statue of two figures hugging
This is a picture of two people hugging this represents reconciliation. Replicas of this statue at Coventry Cathedral are situated around the world to signify international forgiveness.

COVENTRY CATHEDRAL -Reconciliation after World War 2

School/Beneficiary Details:

Our school is called Penkridge Middle School situated in the lovely village of Penkridge. The project was linked to both year 8 Citizenship and RE. It benefited the whole of y8, made up of 110 pupils who all visited Coventry Cathedral. About 30 of these pupils also looked at the effects of WW2 from a more local perspective by spending the afternoon with some Veterans. We invited them into school, so that they could share with us some of their experiences.

We then shared the experiences with the whole school with some of the Year 8 pupils leading a whole school assembly.


  • To encourage Y8 pupils to investigate the impact of WW2 on the lives of everyone that was involved, with 2 focuses one at Coventry and one more local.
  • To inform pupils of the diversity of people who served in the Second World War.
  • The children will be able to communicate their own feelings through the production of a leaflet and especially through their own prayer/poem.
  • The pupils that will work with veterans will form positive community links.
  • Both parts of the project offer innovative approaches to fulfilling curriculum requirements with special focus on Citizenship, RE and literacy skills.

Project Activities – What we did in our project

Angel & Devil statue
The picture above is of an angel on top of a devil to represent goodness. This is outside the cathedral doors.

Year 8 have been on a visit to Coventry cathedral. The purpose of the trip was to learn about how the cathedral got bombed in World War 2 and how people reacted to this. We learnt that instead of people getting bitter and angry about the destruction of the cathedral they decided to forgive and move forward, which is called reconciliation.
During the trip we watched a service. Someone read a prayer saying ‘father forgive’.
We also had a tour to hear about and see all the images in the cathedral that are linked to forgiveness.

Here are some pictures to show you incase you have never seen Coventry cathedral.

The title picture is a picture of two people hugging this represents reconciliation. Replicas of this statue are situated around the world to signify international forgiveness.

To find out more about the cathedral click on these websites.

After the Second World War these two wooden planks of wood were found in the shape of a cross. People felt that this was a sign from god that they should forgive.

On our return all of Y8 produced a leaflet about what they had learnt at Coventry cathedral.

Learning about WW2- a more local perspective

War Veterans

On the 2nd February 2005 some year eight pupils were able to meet up with five different people who lived locally, about their experiences in WWII. Three of the people were from the British Legion. They each talked about their very different experiences and roles in the war. Some were children during the war and some were actually involved in the front line, fighting in the war. The veterans all had very interesting stories, some sad and some quite amusing. One of the veterans wrote a book about his experiences.

Click here for more about the British Legion.

Year 8 assembly
Assembly created by year 8 pupils informing the rest of the school about the veterans

Some of the year eights who were involved in the veterans meeting created an assembly informing the rest of the school about the veterans, their experiences and various other topics to related WWII.

Outcomes: What did we achieve from the project?

Each pupil in year 8 produced a leaflet about Coventry Cathedral. This had to include facts about what actually happened during WW2 and how and why Coventry got bombed. Reactions to the bombing were also written about. Pupils then wrote about both the old cathedral, which is left in its damaged state, and the new Cathedral, which features many gifts from around the world, which are all symbols of international reconciliation. Pupils all watched a video that described the work that Coventry Cathedral do today in war zones all around the world.

The outcomes from the tea party were that links were made between pupils and veterans. Students heard real life experiences from our visitors. The veterans also enjoyed meeting our pupils and were impressed at their interest in the subject.

All pupils in the school benefited by hearing about the experiences through a whole school assembly performed by the students themselves. Y8 pupils also benefited to related work, which included what ageism is and the affects of the war on society.