Migration Study Day at Bromley High School

Erik Mathisen

Dr Will Butler reports on a recent outreach event which saw members of the School of History visit Bromley for a workshop on the theme of migration.

On Friday 27th September 2019, staff and students from the School of History took part in a ‘Migration Study Day’ in Bromley. Seventy-five Year 10, 11, and 12 students from Bromley High School, Langley Park School for Girls, Bonus Pastor Catholic College, and the Tonbridge School took part in lectures and workshops relating to the history of migration in Europe and America over the last thousand years.

It was fantastic to be able to showcase the range of expertise across the department, in what was a varied and engaging day of sessions. Dr Ed Roberts walked students through the importance of migration in the making of Medieval Europe, while Dr David Rundle explored the ‘moving edges of Christendom’, looking at migration in Europe during the Renaissance. Dr Erik Mathisen explored ‘Black Culture in Slavery and Freedom’ in his lecture, looking at the history of slavery in America. Dr Will Butler encouraged students to research the impact of the temporary migration of hundreds of thousands of refugees from Belgium to Britain during the First World War, and Dr Aparajita Mukhopadhyay explored the impact of migration on Modern Britain, urging participants to challenge their preconceptions about the subject.


Aparajita Mukhopadhyay
Dr Aparajita Mukhopadhyay discusses migration and modern Britain at Bromley High School

Students were presented with a wide range of sources and teaching methods, permitting them to utilise their historical skills and existing knowledge, and many of the subject areas took them beyond their GCSE and A Level curriculum, while also providing an insight in to what studying History is like at university. The day was also supported by our fantastic team of undergraduate ambassadors, who support all of the work that we do within schools and colleges in the southeast. It was great for our current students to be able to talk with students thinking about applying for university, and for our staff to answer any questions that students had about studying history – especially over tea and cake at lunchtime!

This study day followed several successful years of events held for students at Bromley High School, previously looking at themes such as ‘Women in History’, and a ‘Black History Study Day’, which was also held for schools at Chatham Historic Dockyard in October 2018. If there are any schools who are interested in arranging similar days, please do get in touch with the Outreach Officer for the School of History, Dr Will Butler (w.m.butler@kent.ac.uk), who would be delighted to hear from you.