On April 27th to the 28th, we completed a practise Duke of Edinburgh expedition. For the first day, we were with teachers so they could make sure we were map-reading ready for the next day because we had to walk in our groups without a teacher. Before we could start the expedition, we had to map our route for both days, which had to be at least 12km long. Accompanied by our map we had two route cards where we wrote all the grid references and instructions so on the days we knew if we were on the right track.
On the first day, everybody met at our starting point, which was Ongar. We got into our groups, then we were given our maps and route cards. We set off and after at least six hours walking time we got to our destination: the campsite. When we got to the campsite we had to put up our tents and then we were able to do whatever we wanted. So our group decided to cook our dinner and then we sat in our tents and played cards, which was really fun. We were able to be with people we wouldn't usually be with. After a horrible night’s sleep due to freezing conditions, I got up, got dressed, had breakfast, took down my tent, packed my hiking bag and then finally my group were ready to set off again for the last day.
- Georgia Goldhawk
On the 27th of April, a group of year 10 students, including myself, went on our Bronze Duke of Edinburgh practice walk. We walked for at least 6 hours each day and it was challenging yet thoroughly enjoyable. Through ﬁelds, we trekked. Through bog, we trudged.
Once we reached camp we were all very tired and hungry so we had to set up our tent and cook dinner. Pot noodle and cup-a-soups all around! It was a great evening, even though nobody was satisﬁed with their feast of soggy pasta. A memorable experience for me was when 8 of us gathered in a tent playing cards games for at least 2 hours, it got very serious!
The second day was tougher than the ﬁrst for us as a team because we got lost twice and suffered serious shoulder numbing, however it was all worth it.
All in all, I would deﬁnitely recommend Duke of Edinburgh for anybody offered the chance. I made new friends at the same time as working within a team; I loved it! I'm very excited and prepared for the real thing.
- Rebecca Weston