Listen to the story of one boy's great, great grandfather, who joined a pals battalion - a group of soldiers who were friends, and joined the army at the same time from the same place. The idea was that people who already knew each other well would be good for the army - they would look after each other and keep each other’s spirits up during the hard times. A politician called Lord Derby realised that encouraging men to join up with their friends or colleagues was a useful way to recruit even more soldiers. By the end of September 1914, over 50 towns had formed pals battalions. War memorials all over the country were built after the war in memory of local people who fought bravely for their country during World War One.

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Teach

Pupils could design their own recruitment poster using persuasive language to encourage their potential recruits to enlist. Children could write home as if they were a soldier on the front line, fighting alongside their friends. Special mention could be made in their letters of some of the memorable antics or acts of bravery shown by their friends and workmates. The class could also visit the war memorials in their area to find out about the local heroes who fought bravely in World War One.