A unique insight into the pivotal moments in post war history

Our students were recently given a very unique insight into some of the most defining moments in recent political history.

John Simpson visit
At such a pivotal time in the landscape of international politics, it can be easy to overlook the defining moments that led us to this point. But for lucky students in Years 11 and 12 at Park House School, a unique insight helped to bring history to life as enigmatic reporter and journalist John Simpson took time out of his busy diary to regale students with his experiences of some of the most pivotal moments from the post war world.

Potential future journalists, reporters, writers, and politicians listened, spellbound to the first hand descriptions of John’s time on the front line, usually challenging - both physically and emotionally, as he reported on the Troubles in Northern Ireland, the collapse of Communism in Eastern Europe, the release of Nelson Mandela, the wars in Afghanistan, and Iraq, and of course, most recently, the election of Donald Trump.

Headteacher and History teacher Derek Peaple said, ‘This was a truly exceptional experience for our students. They were privileged to learn from an individual of remarkable wisdom and insight. I know that meeting John will have had a huge impact on their thinking about their own futures and world affairs'.

John Simpson is currently celebrating 50 years with the BBC and visited Park House to share his insights and inspire a new generation of potential journalists and reporters. Inspire was exactly what he did.

One student Sophie Doherty Y12 who met with John said – ‘It was really interesting to hear about his amazing experiences. I learnt so much about world affairs. The DVD of his broadcasts was really powerful, and you couldn’t believe he had actually been to the places he had been in. He was really great at actually answering the questions that we asked him and being really honest! He really is the David Attenborough of the news!’

Luke Donohoe from Year 11 said of the day– ‘This experience has definitely made me look at the world and the wars that are happening differently. It shows how much passion John has for his job, as he is really putting his life on the line to get the story.’