Y13 Field Trip to the Cranedale Centre

In November, we left HGS behind and headed for the rainy, green and very beautiful Yorkshire. Cranedale was definitely a thrilling experience; sixteen A level geographers, plus Miss Morgan and Mr Bird, eagerly awaited for the lectures from professional geographers and we were not disappointed. For the majority of us, it was not only our first taste of fieldwork, but also our first residential experience. Geographical skills play a vital role in not only our A level studies, but for the understanding of our environment: despite the trip being a lot of fun it was crucial for our learning too.

After a long, four-hour journey, we finally had the opportunity of exploring the natural world directly, with a hands-on lesson in learning about the effects on nature caused by the water and carbon cycle. We did an investigation into the moisture of soil between homogenised and non-homogenised areas using quadrats. It was also a great way to start the adventure and for everyone to interact. We retuned to the centre for dinner which was really nice, especially the pasta dish and the hot chocolate roll for dessert.  After that we were able to relax, or so we thought! After a little break we headed to the classrooms and started preparations for how we can apply our collected data into a stats test.

The following morning, we headed off to rainy Scarborough. It started off really cold and wet, that didn’t stop us from collecting data. This day was my favourite as it heavily relied on a changing places, one of the fun aspects of human geography. We were had the opportunity to explore different locations – my favourite was going to the beach – and learning about the history of Scarborough. [In particular,] We conducted various surveys by collecting qualitive data, which allowed us to gauge the lived experience of a visitor and the dominant place characteristics of Scarborough.

On Thursday, we visited the rocky, white Flamborough Head, the fastest eroding coastline in the UK. This was definitely the most challenging day. In order to get to the beach, we had to walk a flight of 190 steep steps – talk about a leg day! We braved the strong 40mph winds, whilst studying about coastal erosion. It was a windy and cold day but the advantage of being with friends and nice tutors make the experience more enjoyable and work seem less challenging. We returned back to the centre and analysed and presented our data to each other. After most days we spent our relaxation time in the common area. Some played foosball, some played table tennis and others played card games.

On our final day, Friday was spent doing an overview of our week at Cranedale and we were randomly given a bucket of resources and using our knowledge from the trip, were to find out how we would conduct our own mini NEA. Finally, it was time for us to head back home!

Overall, we all learned a lot from our experience at the Cranedale Centre. It was really helpful and definitely aided to guide us in our NEA topic and the various types of methods and data we can use. We were glad that we had the opportunity to attend the trip as it truly developed us, not only as geographers and our upcoming A level exams, but also developed our class bond. It was a truly a memorable experience!

Muhammad Ali Imran