Evacuee Experience

Pupils will travel back to the dark days of the Second World War to learn all about the experiences of local children forced from their homes as evacuees.

They’ll learn about the experiences of young evacuees and empathise with displaced children, examine artefacts from Bury Transport Museum and Bury Art Museum, and experience an evacuee’s journey on a steam hauled train.

Who’s it for?

Evacuee Experience is suitable for Key Stage 2 pupils.

Dates, times & prices

Evacuee Experience is available on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays in April, May, June and September. Pre-booking is essential on this highly popular school trip.

  • Option One – Single ticket
    £9.50 per pupil
  • Option Two – Return ticket
    £11.50 per pupil
  • Accompanying Adult Ticket free


Attendees will be split into two groups. One will begin their trip at the Bury Transport Museum and the other at Bury Art Museum, before switching places. Finally, pupils will take a train journey to Rawtenstall for a billeting exercise before departing or taking the return journey to Bury Bolton Street Station.

Children will work in small groups and complete a number of exercises at each museum. Unfortunately, individual children will not have time to complete every exercise, so follow-up time may be needed at school so they can share what they have learned.

Activities include:

  • “What’s in my pockets?” – Pupils will examine the contents of a fictional evacuee boy’s pockets to explore how children played, and the differences between the lives of children then and today
  • Studying artefacts – At both museums, pupils will examine genuine period items from the Second World War and think about who they belonged to and how they were used
  • Evacuee suitcases – Attendees examine the types of clothing that evacuee children would be familiar with, and see how much (or how little) each evacuee was allowed to take with them
  • Air raid! – Pupils will learn how a family would have coped in an air raid shelter, and discover how people tried to make their time in shelters more comfortable
  • Money – Children will examine and identify period coins, using them to make up amounts and give change

Pupils will need to make the short walk between the two museums using the safe crossing points.

Trip timetables

  • 10am
    Arrival at Bolton Street Station and introduction
  • 10:20am
    Session One
  • 11:20am
    Toilet, snack and transfer time
  • 11:50am
    Session Two
  • 12:50pm
    Break and return to the station
  • 1:00pm
    Departure to Rawtenstall and lunch, followed by a billeting exercise
FAQs Icon


What’s included?
  • Full risk assessment
  • Entry to both museums
  • Labels and gas masks
  • Railway journey pulled by a heritage steam or diesel locomotive
What should we bring?
  • A packed lunch and snack for the morning break
  • Waterproof coat
  • Warm cardigan or jumper
  • Comfortable shoes 

While it’s not compulsory, attending in costume will help pupils feel more like evacuee children – it all adds to the atmosphere!

Download our guide

For more information on our Evacuee Experience school visit, download our guide.