Visit inspires future scientists

The roadshow at Werrington primary school.
The roadshow at Werrington primary school.

A number of schools around Peterborough received a special visit last week in the form of a unique partnership between business and the military.

BAE Systems, the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force have joined forces to launch a nationwide schools engineering and science roadshow. The idea of the partnership, which is now the largest ever schools programme of its kind, is to tackle the UK’s shortage of scientists and engineers by inspiring students to look ahead at future careers

The roadshow, now in its 11th year, provides a highly visual, educational and interactive theatre presentation to students of both primary and secondary schools. The theme of this year’s roadshow focusses on the science of ‘waves’ – highlighting the three key forms, sound, light and water. The practical demonstrations used in the show help pupils to understand how the physics of waves and engineering are used in the real world by aircraft and naval engineers – assisting teachers in tackling this difficult part of the national curriculum for science.

With the Royal Navy joining the programme in 2016, the schools roadshow now has the additional resources to visit more cities up and down the country.

Since its inception in 2005, the Royal Air Force and BAE Systems have brought the roadshow to more than 365,000 young people at 2,200 schools.

John Whelan, Human Resources Director of Programmes and Support at BAE Systems, said: “We are delighted that the Royal Navy has joined BAE Systems and the Royal Air Force in taking the roadshow to 90,000 young people.

“This helps meet the overwhelming demand for our roadshow from teachers and brings science, engineering, technology and maths to life for even more young people.’

Rear Admiral John Clink, Flag Officer Sea Training (FOST) for the Royal Navy, added: “The Royal Navy is delighted to be a part of this STEM roadshow to enthuse the talented scientists, engineers, technicians and researchers of the future.

“The two new 65,000 tonne Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers entering our service, are but one example of people with STEM skills developing technological solutions to complex problems.

“It is my belief that events such as this will inspire the next generation to want to play a part in this technological journey so vital for the prosperity of the United Kingdom.”