Victorian resources (these were created for St Michael-on-the-Mount Primary School, but contain generic content that can be applied elsewhere).
In Victorian times, Ashley Down was just fields, set some distance outside the city. It was for this very reason that George Muller chose the top of Ashley Hill for the site of his new, larger orphanage following complaints of rowdiness from neighbours at the Wilson Street orphanage in St Pauls. Muller, a devout Christian, reputedly never directly asked for financial assistance, but believed that any donations were in answer to his prayers and evidence that there was a God.
As part of the Heritage Schools initiative, we took pupils from nearby primary schools, Glenfrome and Horfield to explore the site of the orphanage (now part of City of Bristol College). Local Learning helped pupils to identify the building’s numerous original features, and to understand the grim alternatives to life in the orphanage. With the help of a graduate from the University of the West of England, each pupil was provided with a profile from a child who had lived at the orphanage and, assuming that persona, Local Learning helped supported pupils in writing a prayer or persuasive speech to encourage the Victorian middle classes to write a substantial cheque to help subsidise George Muller’s plans.