Should Lindisfarne College rugby team loosie George Hamilton get emotional on the team's tour of France and England he will have a good excuse.
When in France the 30-strong tour party will visit the town of Le Quesnoy. A week before the end of World War I in November 1918 a New Zealand regiment of soliders which included Hamilton's great, great uncle, Noel Hamilton, captured the town from the Germans.
The New Zealanders liberated the town by scaling a ladder set against the ancient walls of the town and taking the remaining Germans as prisoners.
"Uncle Noel died over there in 1918 and is buried there. It's going to be awesome to visit his grave as at least three generations of our family have over the years," Hamilton said.
"I understand a couple of streets over there are named after New Zealanders and a school is named after a New Zealand soldier."
A 16-year-old Year 11 student, Hamilton, is in his third year at Lindisfarne after completing his Year 8 studies in Singapore. While attending Hereworth School before then he represented the Hastings East C grade team.
This year Hamilton, who prefers the openside flanker role but can also play in the backs, alternated between Lindisfarne's second and third XVs.
"The goal is to do enough on this tour to earn a spot in next year's 1st XV. If I don't, there is always the following year but next year is a big one for the firsts so it will be good to make the side," Hamilton said.
"This tour is going to be an awesome experience. I've been to England once but there will be new places to explore on this trip and new stuff to learn as well as having the opportunity to play rugby with my mates."
Hamilton has yet to decide whether he will attend Lincoln University in Christchurch or Smedley Station in Central Hawke's Bay when he leaves school.
Tour manager Ben Spriggens stressed the trip isn't just about rugby.
"The cultural aspect is very important. We visit places like Lindisfarne Castle which our school is named after. George's family connection with Le Quesnoy will provide a moving experience for all of the tour group."
At the same time he hopes the tour will produce ideal preparation for a tough 2019 rugby season for the school. Next year will see Lindisfarne host the annual quadrangular tournament which also involves St Andrew's College of Christchurch, Scots College of Wellington and St Kentigern College of Auckland.
"In addition we will play the likes of Napier Boys' High School, Hastings Boys' High School, Wesley College and St Peter's College of Cambridge."
This trip will be the college's first rugby tour since a 2012 expedition to the United Kingdom and Ireland. Five rugby games will be played - one against the Racing U17s and Stade Francais U18s in France and in England one against RGS Newcastle, Oakham and Whitgift.
There will be plenty of sightseeing with the Eiffel Tower, The Lourve and Notre Dame all on the French segment of the itinerary. Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square, Olympic Stadium, Twickenham Stadium and Windsor Castle are included on the England segment.
Lindisfarne College has produced five All Blacks - Mick Duncan, John Timu, Taine Randell, Campbell Johnstone and Israel Dagg.
In 2006 Dagg was selected for a Northern Hemisphere tour with a Lindisfarne College tour group but had to withdraw because of his first class commitments with the Hawke's Bay Magpies team.
The Lindisfarne College squad for the September 21-October 11 tour is:
Reece Akuhata, Kurtis Arlidge, Steven Black, James Buckeridge, George Charteris, Oliver Clayton, Josh Dixon, Charlie Dods, Jordy Douglas, Ben Gibbs, Atawhai Hadfield, George Hamilton, Sam Horsefield, Fergus Jull, Jack Kidd, Jono Kilsby, Kaaka MacDonald, Fred Mowat, Harry Mowat, Samuel Porter-Samuels, Arthur Russell, Toi Smith-Dunlop, Harry Stephenson, Ben Thomassen, Josh Tomlinson, George Twigley.
Tour Manager: Ben Spriggens.
Coach: Karl Jones.
Coach: Jared Fritchley.
Rector: Ken MacLeod.