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Transport & Travel is one of a suite of themed Living History sessions designed to immerse students in history amongst Milestones’ historical streets, buildings and vehicles.

Students will explore vehicles from the past through a range of activities enabling them close study of a variety of historical travel and transport, comparing the museum’s vehicle collections with the vehicles of today.

Each session is led by a Costumed Interpreter in role, who will facilitate activities to enable students to identify similarities and differences between transport and travel in different periods, and to discuss them in everyday historical terms.

Accommodates up to three classes (maximum 35 students per class).

This programme and the activities focus on observation, exploration and comparison of the historic vehicles, which are very fragile and access to the inside of vehicles is limited. The 1935 bus can be boarded freely, as can the fire engine passenger seat (accommodates one at a time) and also the tram can be boarded at request from your facilitator.

National Curriculum Links

  • KS1 History: Changes within living memory.
  • KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places in their own locality (Thornycroft of Basingstoke)
  • KS1 Science: Everyday materials

 Session Objectives

  • To be able to organise, classify and compare different vehicles
  • To understand how transport and travel have changed over time

Key Facts

  • Lunchroom included
  • 1:5 adult: student ratio requested
  • There are two 45 minute led sessions: one in the Victorian/Edwardian streets, and one in the 1930s streets; plus one session of free time to explore the museum and one for lunch
  • Each 45 minute activity session accommodates up to one class of 35 students (plus accompanying adults). A total of three classes can be accommodated on the programme on any one day
  • Where multiple classes are participating in the programme, it will operate as a carousel
  • It is particularly suitable for KS1
  • Occasionally particular vehicles may be moved or may leave the museum for event, display or conservation purposes. We regret that schools are unable to request coverage of specific vehicles

Programme Information

The activities in which students participate include:

  • What am I? – our costumed character has just moved to the town from the countryside and has never seen vehicles like these before! Using the questions provided, gather information about the different types of vehicle to report back and teach them about everything from bicycle to bus, pantechnicon to brewer’s dray!
  • Old and New – detective work is required to identify the museum vehicles that correspond to the modern versions – where is the old builder’s van, and what does a 1924 tipper truck look like?
  • Bus Bits – get up close to the 1935 Portsmouth bus by climbing aboard to find the actual items pictured in the zoomed-in photographs. What are they and what were they for?
  • Fire Engines – Milestones has several fire engines spanning nearly 300 years of production. Discuss changes over time through this spot the difference activity.
  • Thornycroft of Basingstoke – our costumed character will show you the variety of vehicles and technology produced by this significant Basingstoke manufacturer.
  • Street Secrets – the weighbridge, the sand bin and the pelican crossing are as much part of the transport network as the roads, rails and vehicles. Hunt to find mysterious items on Milestones’ streets and learn their purpose!
  • Delivery – locate the old-fashioned delivery vehicles such as the baker’s hand-cart and the ice-cream bicycle by matching them to the produce they carried.
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