A TRIP to Sudan isn’t usually on most schools’ itineraries, but students and staff from Gordon’s School spent a week in the capital city, Khartoum.
Gordon’s School shares a unique history and connection to Khartoum as it is the national memorial to the British war hero and philanthropist General Charles Gordon and was founded following his death in Khartoum in 1885.
It also houses a statue of General Gordon which originally graced a crossroads in Khartoum, and one of the Gordon Foundation trustees is Tom Gordon – great-great-great nephew of General Gordon.
The invitation for the historic visit – believed to be the first by a European school – came from the co-founders of the Khartoum International Community School (KICS), who discovered Gordon’s School when helping their son with a school project on General Gordon.
The trip included a boat trip along the Nile; the Meroe Pyramids; the National Republic Museum; camping in the desert and tea at the British Embassy.
Last summer Gordon’s School welcomed the then-British Ambassador to Sudan, Michael Aron and now Gordon’s and KICS are determined to develop and maintain links, with an exchange visit already planned.
Student Victoria Wright asked to go as she is keen to work with NGOs in the future. Although admitting Sudan wasn’t her idea of a typical holiday destination, she is keen to return. “Everyone we met was so hospitable and friendly and approachable,” she said.
David Lelliott, British Embassy Charge d’Affaires in Sudan, has offered support in educational links between the schools and it is hoped there will be further visits as well as placements for gap students from Gordon’s, teacher experience and joint Model United Nations activity.