A group of 16 “Chernobyl Children” from Mogilev in Belarus has been visiting Northallerton for a month, hosted by local families.  One of their experiences was a day spent visiting The Royal Navy Museum in Hartlepool, organised by the Rotary Club of Northallerton and accompanied by three Club members. Thanks to Grand Central Trains, who provided complimentary tickets for the journey from Northallerton, the arrival in Hartlepool was just a short walk to the Museum.


During the rail journey the children enjoyed their “goodie bags” which were provided by Club member Ian Stevenson, the owner of the Esso filling station and shop on Boroughbridge Road in Northallerton.  On arrival the children toured the Hartlepool museum before lunch, then in the afternoon they explored HMS Trincomalee, the oldest warship still afloat, with their interpreters translating the guide book for them. They all took delight in ringing the ship’s bell.  This was followed by a noisy and exciting demonstration of the live firing of muskets and a cannon.


The previous evening, the children performed a concert of song and dance at the New Life Baptist Church in Northallerton, entertaining their hosts and supporters. They returned to Belarus on 13 July, and will come back next summer for the third of their 4 annual visits to this area.


Photo:  The Chernobyl children and interpreters in the prow of HMS Trincomalee.