History KS2: Z is for Zeppelin

Newsreel, photographs and a school child’s commentary give an account of the Zeppelin raids on Britain which began in January 1915.

This was the first time civilian populations had been attacked from the air.

Around 1,400 British people were killed in the Zeppelin raids, which also caused widespread damage.

In a dramatic monologue, Stanley Joseph Grimes, aged 10, tells us about the Zeppelins he saw on their way to bomb London.

He recalls seeing the wreckage of a Zeppelin that was shot down at Cuffley near Potters Bar, in 1916.

This was the first Zeppelin to be brought down on British soil.

Zeppelins would never again enjoy a reputation for being ‘invincible’.

This clip is from the series WW1 A to Z.

Teacher Notes

Pupils could locate Cuffley on a map of the UK.

They could search online using the search term ‘Cuffley Zeppelin’ to find out more about the airship Stanley Grimes describes.

Newsreel items, first-hand accounts, letters and newspaper reports are all freely available for study.

Pupils could write a short story ‘Night of the Zeppelin’ describing the events of 3rd September 1916.

Why do they think the story of the Cuffley Zeppelin was so widely reported by the British press?

Curriculum Notes

This short film might be useful for teaching history at Key Stage 2 / Second Level or above.

More from World War One A to Z

Y is for Your Country Needs You
A is for Archduke Franz Ferdinand
B is for Battalions