A school field trip to France was especially poignant for a Leamington girl who saw the grave of her great grandfather during a visit to a war cemetery.
Izzy Miller, 11, was among the a group of Year 6 pupils from The Kingsley Preparatory School who travelled to Normandy to visit various historical sites from the Second World War including the Pegasus Bridge, the Merville Gun Battery Museum and the D-Day beaches.
At the Ranville War Cemetery, Izzy laid a wreath – made of cornflowers, the school’s emblem and French flower of remembrance - on behalf of The Kingsley School on the grave of Pte Arthur Miller from the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, who died on 19th July 1944 aged 27 years old.
She said: “I had heard my grandparents talking about Arthur Miller and they have pictures of him but I didn’t know where he was buried.
My Dad checked the name of the cemetery and we found out that his grave was there.
When I went I felt happy and sad at the same time because it was good to be able to see the grave but sad that he, and so many others, died.”
Izzy’s classmates also left individual handwritten messages on other graves in the cemetery.
Every summer, Year 6 Kingsley girls travel to Normandy for a French field trip.
They quickly find themselves immersed in French culture and are encouraged to speak the language wherever possible.
Anne Hornsby, headteacher of Kingsley Prep School, said: “This year the visit to the cemetery had added significance with the family connection of Izzy’s relative being buried there.
“All the girls were very respectful and seeing all the graves helped them appreciate the extent of the lives that were lost in the war.”