Pupils’ relics get starring role in radio quest

RADIO TIMES: Jo Deakin from BBC Radio 7 interviews Corrin Leeming, eight, and Jamys Christian, four, about their artifacts brought in for the Relic Challenge

RADIO TIMES: Jo Deakin from BBC Radio 7 interviews Corrin Leeming, eight, and Jamys Christian, four, about their artifacts brought in for the Relic Challenge

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TWO primary school pupils from the Isle of Man have a starring role in a BBC radio quest to unearth fascinating objects from the past.

St John’s Primary School entered the Relic Challenge, submitting five objects brought in by pupils.

The challenge tied in with A History of the World, a partnership between the BBC, the British Museum and museums across Britain to tell history through man-made objects.

Primary pupils throughout the British Isles were invited to add objects to a specially created digital museum and 40 schools took part, submitting 150 items.

Just 20 objects have been selected to feature in a resulting radio series.

These include an old Downwards codd neck pop bottle of the type once manufactured in the Isle of Man and submitted by Jamys Christian, four, who is in the reception class at St John’s. The bottle was unearthed by his father, Phillip, while he was ploughing a field in Ballaugh. The discovery prompted Jamys to start collecting glass bottles.

Also featured will be a cow bone that was carved at the Knockaloe internment camp by German prisoners during the First World War and taken to school by Corrin Leeming, eight. The bone, inscribed with the Three Legs of Mann and the dates 1914-1917, was sold to Corrin’s great-great-grandfather, William Duggan, a guard at the camp, and has been in his family ever since.

Jo Daykin from BBC Radio 7 has travelled around the British Isles interviewing children and met up with Jamys and Corrin at St John’s school.

The programmes will be broadcast every weekday from March 7 until April 1.

Nigel Bennett, head teacher at St John’s, said the school’s participation stemmed from a day organised by teacher Gill Buttery. ‘The children brought in some amazing items and the whole school voted for their favourite five,’ he said. ‘It’s fantastic that the BBC has chosen two of them to feature in its programme.’

Jo added: ‘Pupils and families have really risen to the Relic Challenge, suggesting a rich variety of objects that are a gateway to many fascinating and moving stories.’

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