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Year 13 Geography Residential Field Visit

On Monday the 19 February, following the half term break, Year 13 students participated in this year’s residential field visit to Liverpool. This four-day visit allowed students to undertake two pieces of field research (one human and one physical). The physical study was based around the Sefton coastline, more specifically the sand dunes at Ainsdale, whilst the human study focused on urban regeneration within Liverpool city centre.

After arriving at the Liverpool Youth Hostel, the first afternoon provided an opportunity for the group to explore the culture of the city. They visited The Albert Dock, Museum of Liverpool, Matthew Street and the famous Cavern Club, along with the new Liverpool One development. This gave some context as to how the city has changed over time, and also helped the students to orientate themselves in their new surroundings for the forthcoming human study.

Monday evening allowed some important preparation time for the following day and the forthcoming physical geography study. The students were briefed, research documentation was prepared and final instructions were provided to each group in order to maximise time at the research location.

On Tuesday the group travelled by train to Ainsdale. The weather conditions were favourable; blue skies and sunshine, even if the wind was a little cold! Once research locations were established, each group set about completing a transect across the complete dune system. This included taking distance and height measurements, along with soil and vegetation data, to name a few. The students worked extremely well, despite the slightly cold and windy conditions in exposed areas; the dunes provided more shelter as they progressed inland. The research was completed by 4pm, when the group headed back to the Youth Hostel. After dinner, students were straight back to work, writing up the physical geography results and preparing for the second day of human research.

Wednesday morning’s research location was the Liverpool One shopping and leisure complex where, again, students split into groups. Research methods included questionnaires, pedestrian counts and environmental quality surveys. Students conducted research at various locations within the city centre in order to assess the impact of urban regeneration.

The final day in Liverpool allowed for some further research to be conducted into the history and development of the city, with a visit to the Liverpool World museum. Finally, before the journey back to Leeds, there was just enough time for the group to take a trip to the top of St John’s Beacon. It’s the tallest landmark in Liverpool city centre, allowing a 360 degree bird’s eye view of the city and was an ideal vantage point to take aerial photographs of some of the research locations from the previous day.

Overall, the field visit was a great success, not only providing students with the necessary research for their written assessments, but also allowing them to apply geographical skills, developed in the classroom, out in the field.

Mr R Talyor,

Teacher of Geography

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