Somme 100 Learning Resources
The Royal British Legion has produced free information that schools, teachers and educators will find useful in developing their lesson plans for Somme 100.
Remember the Somme 1916-2016
The Battle of the Somme was fought at such terrible cost that it has come to symbolise the tragic futility of the First World War. Its first day of conflict remains the bloodiest day in the history of the British Army and it was felt deeply at home, in particular in those towns and villages which had raised Pals battalions and suffered horrible losses.
Its 100th anniversary provides an opportunity to educate young people about the Service and sacrifice of those who lost their lives in the battle, to reflect upon the human cost of conflict and to have hope for a more peaceful world.
We've put together some resources that we hope you will find useful in developing your lesson plans. (Downloadable documents are in PDF format.)
Sport Remembers the Somme
The Battle of the Somme was felt particularly within communities back home, including sports clubs and teams. To aid the war effort, virtually all professional sport had been suspended by the time the Battle of the Somme began. Athletes and players from sports at all levels had volunteered to enlist – sometimes en masse as an entire team to form a 'Pals' Battalion; signing up together on the promise they would serve alongside each other. There were battalions dedicated to athletes, footballers, and individual clubs and teams of a variety of sports.
Many other players – from Olympic athletes to first class cricketers and amateur boxers – served in Pals Battalions recruited from towns, villages, schools, workplaces and trades. When these battalions suffered losses, as they did mostly at the Somme, the impact was felt at the club and community level.
To help understand their contribution, and commemorate their service and sacrifice, the Legion has produced addition resources that you may find useful in developing your lesson plans. (Downloadable documents are in PDF format.)
- Lieutenant Colonel Haig-Brown – A reading
- 'Legion Standard', your souvenir '1916' sports edition newspaper
- Promotional poster
The Legion has also uncovered some incredible stories of sportsmen who were at the Somme, from Olympic sprinters to England rugby players.