PUPILS from Orchard Vale Primary School have been helping staff at the Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon dig for victory. As part of a project called 'Their Past, Your Future' an area outside the museum has been fenced off to create a dig for victory

PUPILS from Orchard Vale Primary School have been helping staff at the Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon dig for victory.As part of a project called 'Their Past, Your Future' an area outside the museum has been fenced off to create a dig for victory allotment-style garden. Seeds and plants for cabbages, carrots, onions and marrows, which would have been widely grown and eaten during the second world war, have been planted using tools from the 1940s. Later in the year the garden will be completed with the addition of its very own Anderson Shelter.'Their Past, Your Future' is part of a Lottery funded project to inspire people of all ages to discover the impact of 20th century conflict and why it is relevant now and for the future. Plants and tools have been donated to the museum to help with the creation of the garden from B&Q and St John's Garden Centre with heritage seed varieties from Garden Organic.Helen Gray, freelance historian and gardener helping staff at the museum with the site, said: "I started work on the site earlier in the year clearing the area and preparing the ground ready for the pupils' visit. "We have been busy planting and sowing vegetables that would have been a main ingredient in wartime cooking. It has been a pleasure to work with the children they are really enthusiastic towards the tasks."David Langford, teacher of Years five and six at Orchard Vale, said: "World War II is part of the school curriculum every two years. This project has been great for highlighting to pupils the issues surrounding growing and preparing your own food during the war and the vast amount of land that was needed to grow food for the whole country. The hands-on experience has really helped show the pupils the role that they may have played in the war."Julian Vayne, education officer at the Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon, said: "We hope that the garden will become a lasting part of the museum service that can be used by schools, community groups and the public to learn more about food production during the second world war. The pupils' enthusiasm and energy towards the project has really got the garden off to a fantastic start."The garden is not only about the war, but also aims to encourage people to grow their own produce and think about sustainability and food production.