As part of a group of nine sixthformers, I went to Wooler and braved the wintery conditions as part of our A-Level geography course.
We arrived at Wooler Youth Hostel bright and early on Monday morning and got sorted with our rooms, but to our surprise Mr Fleet spared no time in getting us up and out. We grabbed our packed lunches and headed back to the bus with thermals and walking gear on. It was only once on board that he told us we were headed for Holy Island, despite the weather.
It became clear once we arrived that Mr Fleet has no mercy. It was windy and snowy – not the desired weather to be observing the beach and climbing over rock. But we did and we managed – just – to make it back to the bus.
We arrived back at the hostel where we enjoyed good food. A welcome arrival that night came in the form of Mrs Davis, who joined us and would perhaps show more understanding at the inclement conditions.
The next day we headed to Berwick and surveyed two different villages. We looked at the differences/similarities between the Berwick villages and villages from different parts of the country.
That night we were put into teams and did a quiz around Wooler – with the prospect of winning a cupcake.
Unfortunately due to the weather we could not go out onto the river the following day, even Mr Fleet spared us that experience. Instead we went on a short walk to just look at the river close to the youth hostel. It was certainly a drier and warmer option then wading. Further written work and study filled the afternoon and as the weather improved, we went on a walk around Wooler.
On Thursday we were taken onto the dunes, possibly the coldest day any of us had ever experienced. Being in Mr Fleet's group he was certain to make sure that we looked at every different plant species and took every reading necessary across the dunes.
On Friday, we had a lovely breakfast, packed up the bus and returned to JCSC. The trip was good fun and worthwhile. We experienced the physical side of geography first-hand which makes our studies not only more enjoyable, but also more relevant.
Alexandra Stott, Year 12
Originally published in the Northumberland Gazette on 17/04/2013.