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Ash Hill welcomes back wartime evacuee after 80 years

We were delighted to welcome a very special visitor to the academy today.  Bernard Atkinson was sent from Hull to the relative safety of Hatfield, during the Second World War, at the age of 10.  He attended Ash Hill Academy (Hatfield Modern School, as it was called at the time) and has very fond memories of his time here.  Having returned to Hull and completed his schooling there, he joined the RAF and was based at Scampton with the famous 617 Squadron (Dambusters). His biggest passion is his Royal Air Force Amature Radio Society of which he still runs the East Yorkshire Branch and is a first class talent in Morse Code. Bernard has been involved with the Doncaster Airgunners who have worked hard to keep a tradition alive and build a bond of friendship and reconciliation with their former adversaries, The German Luftwaffe veterans.

Bernard recently turned 90, and his family and friends organised the visit to Hatfield as a surprise for him.  Bernard spent time recounting stories from his time both at the school and in the RAF and was involved in a fascinating question and answer session with GCSE History students.  Bernard was presented with a painting of the school, as it looked when he attended it, as well as a number of photographs of the area at the time of his stay.

We hope that Bernard will visit us again soon.