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Over 2,000 attend Big Bang West Midlands Fair 2018

The Big Bang West Midlands Fair: Bringing science, technology, engineering, arts & maths to life for young people

Staffordshire University played host to the regional Big Bang West Midlands Fair yesterday as 2000 young people descended on the campus to explore hands-on science, technology, engineering, arts and maths (STEM) careers. As Learn by Design managed and delivered the day, West Midlands Apprenticeship Ambassador Network provided valuable guidance and support to young people seeking apprenticeship advice.

The University’s flagship Science Centre, Sir Stanley Matthews Sports Centre and buildings on the Leek Road site were transformed into a hub of activity, as exhibitors and STEM experts offered first-hand career advice.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Liz Barnes said:

“This was a golden opportunity for us to showcase our facilities and some of the amazing learning and teaching that happens here at Staffordshire University in a way that allows young people to get hands-on with a fascinating array of activities. We are delighted with the enthusiastic take up from schools around the country and look forward to giving our visitors a brilliant and friendly welcome and work with the organisers and other exhibitors to help excite them about science and inspire them about their futures.”

All of the young people in attendance were given a pedometer in a bid to walk 10,000,000 steps to virtually visit Staffordshire University students on work placements around the globe. The results were incredible with the young people clocking up enough steps to walk to Japan!

Michelle Lewis of Learn By Design said: “We were sad to say goodbye to Coventry and the RICOH arena which has hosted the event for the last 5 years but we are excited about the new partnership with Staffordshire University and the opportunities for a fresh approach that the new area provides.

The event saw engaging science presenters entertaining its audience with shows including Dr Emily Grossman’s Weird and Wonderful Science Facts, Cracking the code with Simon Watt as he paid tribute to our mutant species and their special abilities.  Mousetrap Balloon Show once again provided a captivating show, intriguing students to learn about the mechanics of machines through visually appealing balloon creations.

New to The Big Bang Midlands show was Power Up (PALS Productions) in which TV presenters Mandy Megawatt and DJ Kilowatt challenged young people to think about saving power. Bringing to life the realities of how much electricity humans waste each year.

In total the event saw 4 pre-bookable shows, 12 workshops and over 50 exhibitors, bringing to life company innovations, highlighting world issues and driving us into the future with clear pictures of what skills are required to keep our industry and planet moving. The school projects captured the essence of the day, as they encouraged young people to use enterprise skills in-order to solve world issues. Projects included devices to aid sleep and assist non-swimmers whilst one project looked at using solar energy to power vehicles.

Big Bang Competition:

Here are all the winning projects, going through to The Big Bang Competition 2019!

Award for Creativity: Sandbach High School – Excerise Toy for Children Award for Enthusiam: Loughborough Grammar School – The Claw Award for Innovation: Sandbach High School – Sustainable One Cup Kettle Award for Real-World Application: Sandbach High School – Parched Plants Award for Communication: Mary Webb School – Social Media

Award for Best Overall Project: Sandbach High School – Parched Plants

There were also awards given for the Go 4 Set Big Bang Competition. These winners will also be going through the Big Bang Competition in 2019:

Best Team: The Hart School People’s Choice Award: Westwood Academy

Best Overall Project: Stoke Studio College – Station for the Future

A massive thank you to all the Staffordshire University team who played host to The Big Bang West Midlands Fair and who provided a huge amount of engaging workshops for visitors to participate in. The team were also incredible with helping to manage the day and provided everything needed for an exceptional experience!

Fun Stats & Figures:

Over 2,000 people attended The Big Bang West Midlands Fair 2018.

#TBBWM2018 was used 312 times across Twitter, Instagram and other web applications.

#TBBWM2018 was shared 728 times.

#TBBWM2018 reached a whopping 121,077 people!

Keep up to date with all the Big Bang West Midlands gossip by following @TBB_WMidlands and use #TBBWM2018.


Discover all the photos from the event here.


Learn by Design are proud to deliver such an incredible event which continues to highlight the wealth of career exploration for our next generation whilst shining a light on our new digital age.

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