Leighton school looks to Second World War for covid inspiration

Pupils and staff filmed the production over six weeks

By Lynn Hughes
Monday, 29th November 2021, 3:00 pm
Students performing from Leighton Middle School

A lockdown idea to contrast how children impacted by the Second World War and youngsters today facing the impact of Covid have coped, has seen its premiere at a Leighton Buzzard School.

'Lands of Hope and Glory' was filmed at Leighton Middle School on Church Square, and parents have now been able to watch the production.

The idea for the play came from learning support assistant Tracie Maglio, and involved 34 children and some of the staff at the school.

Recreating life during the Second World War

Tracie said during the run up to the first lockdown: "I started to sense in our children a sort of uncertainty that children in the run up to the Second World War would have experienced.

"It was just what our children going through at our first lockdown and that inspired me.

"It's about how children coped with all this newfound uncertainty in the war and with covid now, such as wearing masks or online learning, that they just had to get on with.!

Tracie worked with head of music Katrina Purcell with help from Sandy Whitehouse and Paul Gladwin at the school.

A lot of the filming was done during the day and the production took about six weeks to out together.

"The kids loved it," said Tracie, who has written small pieces and sketches before, although this is her first play.

"They had a very positive approach to it.

!Filming was not always easy as we had to abide by social distancing rules and year group bubbles but, as a group, we managed to overcome these challenges.

"The film includes songs sung by the children and music played by the school orchestra and has some very comical and touching moments."

The film's premiere was held at the school earlier this month with lots of positive feedback from parents.