Frogmore Paper Mill

School Trips

Home / London & South East / Hertfordshire

Frogmore is the world's oldest mechanised paper mill, the birthplace of paper's industrial revolution. Today it is still a working paper mill using machinery that is over 100 years old. It is also a dedicated visitor centre, where primary, secondary, further and higher education groups learn about the fascinating history of papermaking, from its beginnings more than 2000 years ago, through to mass production by machine. We offer hands-on active sessions. Paper is one of the most essential but overlooked commodities of the communication age. See our 1902 Fourdrinier papermaking machine in action!

Visiting school groups can make their own sheet of paper, tour the historic site and learn about the industrial process as well as completing other curriculum related activities from our selection. These include: braille, weaving, letterpress, recycling, history, science, the canals and we are perfect for the GCSE Design and Technology paper component.

We can offer 1/2 day and whole day sessions. Packed lunches may be eaten on site and we have plenty of coach parking here, with easy links to the major road connections of the M1, M25 and A1M, plus main line trains are 25 minutes from Euston.

Frogmore Paper Mill photograph
school trip at Frogmore Paper Mill
Frogmore Paper Mill school groups


Why book Frogmore Paper Mill for School Trips and Educational Visits?

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The venue is one of the few, if not the only, working industrial heritage venues open to visitors. We offer a unique experience as commented upon by our many young visitors and school staff.

“The tour was fascinating, and the sessions were interesting and enjoyable. The children and their parents thoroughly enjoyed the day, and we hope to be able to return in the future.” – South Bucks Jewish School

"I can't thank you all enough for the hard work, time and effort you all put in yesterday. The buzz around rooms and at the end of the day was fantastic - more than I was hoping for! Students and staff alike were full of ideas and I know one school - not mine... - has already seen the head about things they want to do which is great!" - Verulam School

Papermaking is almost magical when viewed for the first time; groups love the experience of making their own handmade paper and seeing the its formation on the machine. Sessions are fact packed but never boring as there is so much to see and do.

Students leave with an understanding of paper production methods, recycling, Victorian industrial heritage and a sense of the working environment. The optional sessions are likewise far from dry and give curriculum linked, genuine understanding of printing, braille, the canals, cellulose fibres, Victorian life and much, much more.

Which Curriculum Subjects do you cater for?

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green tick Design Technology

Curriculum topics available: Materials.

Combined with the hand papermaking workshop and mill tour, which provide an understanding of handmade paper to machine processes; we add two workshops, one for bookbinding and one for printing. These are taught by professionals.
Printing: a mix of talk, demo and video. We cover, materials, tools, processes, paper stock, registration, automation and much more from letterpress and lithography to the present day.
Bookbinding: students explore bonding, creasing, folding and binding methods while producing a simple 16pp hand folded section, from an SRA sheet, to make a book.

green tick Art

Curriculum topics available: Printingmaking, Bookbinding.

We can deliver art focused sessions. Understanding of paper is essential to art practice so our hand papermaking can be extended to include greater hands on time and experimentation with the formation of sheets, combined with a longer tour. Letterpress also suits art and design students.

green tick Industrial

Frogmore is a piece of Victorian, Industrial Revolution history. This Mill was the site where the first mechanised papermaking machine in the world was installed in 1803. This invention fulled the mass availability of paper and together with the Education Act of 1870, changed schooling forever. Here we cover the development of that first machine, the key personalities, inventions developed in the area and the impact local life in the Gade Valley. Students can see our 1902 Fourdrinier paper machine, with steam heated drying cylinders in action, view Fourdrinier No2 of 1895, understand the Dickinson cylinder mould machine and much,much more. Fact packed, hands on and stimulating.

green tick Victorian

Frogmore is a piece of Victorian industrial history which had much impact on the local area as well as internationally with the invention of the first mechanised paper machine. Here we focus on the social history,life in the area, job options, the working conditions, wages and additional benefits of the rapid growth of the paper industry here. Fact filled but supported by visuals and all related to the age of the visiting group. We highlight the difference between modern childhood and the Victorians who may have been an essential wage earner from the age of 10 years old.

green tick Twentieth Century

We focus more greatly on the past but bring everything we do up to date, whether paper or printing. Environmental issues have made paper a topical subject. We cover recycling, the impact of the industry and changing market values.

green tick Chemistry

Curriculum topics available: Scientists and inventors, Properties and changes of materials.

Papermaking is a chemical reaction, Basically it is a hydrogen bonded cellulose mat. In other words water makes plant fibres sticky to form a mat. Students can try this for themselves at its most basic but acquire knowledge of fibre science, reactions, variations and tools at the papermakers disposal to create a range of paper stocks, Using microscopes, students can look closer at different plant fibres and their properties. Aimed at KS2/3

What activities are available during group visits?

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All: Introductory Presentation (30 mins), Hand Papermaking (30-40 mins) and Mill Tour (40 mins).
Plus optional one or two workshops which can be chosen from: Letterpress (to present day), Braille (Louis Braille and using Braille, Canals (how a lock works and maths estimation exercise), local Victorian working life in the Mills (from the point of view of a 10 year old,) Paper Fibres under the Microscope, and paper weaving for the youngest, Recycling can be emphasised whenever required. (all 30- 40mins)
In addition, if weather permits, we can add in a fun and noisy boat race as the finale.

What size groups do you cater for?

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10-45 students for standard workshops KS1-4, 2.5 hours, 3 workshops
30-60 students for a longer day KS1-4 4 hours, 4 workshops.includes D&T
50-60 students for KS3/4 Enterprise Days.
Note;groups are then subdivided into smaller groups of 15-18 for the activities.

Do you offer on-site classroom facilities?

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We have a large multi use space which we use for presentation, delivery and as a base where students may eat a packed lunch. In fine weather they are welcome to sit outside.

Is there first aid on site?

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Yes we have qualified First Aiders.

Do you offer access for visitors with disabilities?

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We have 2 car parking spaces for those with disabilities. There are ramps into the buildings and a lift enables those not wishing to use the stairs, to access the higher levels. We can also adapt the route to ensure wheelchair users do not miss a close up view of our No2 Fourdrinier machine.

Do you cater for visitors with Special Educational Needs (SEN)?

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We welcome everyone to our Education sessions and are happy to discuss or adapt what we deliver - please just talk to us!

Anything else?

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We are happy to discuss individual requirements and adapt sessions wherever possible to meet school requirements. We offer a perfect match for the delivery of the GCSE Design and Technology paper component, can offer standard workshops, longer visits and Enterprise Experiences.

We seek to make learning fun and active.

Reviews from Schools visiting Frogmore Paper Mill!

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