Science -- Your Future, Scotland's Future
The Hebridean Science Festival
17–19 March 2011

For the first time since 2003, the SCI-FUN Roadshow travelled over to Eilean Siar – for the Hebridean Science Festival 2011 – to enthuse local audiences about Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

Taking the SCI-FUN Roadshow to rural Scotland Taking the SCI-FUN Roadshow to rural Scotland
Some of the posters and banners (left) produced for the event, in both Gaelic and English. (Click for larger.)

The Festival took place on 17–19 March 2011, including a range of events across the Hebrides. Our involvement focused on The Nicolson Institute in Stornoway, where we provided presentations and interactive hands-on activities for public and school groups. In total, 378 people visited us across the three days of participation: 180 of these came along to our public day on the 19th March (impressive, since we were in competition with the last day of the 6 Nations rugby tournament).

Before our trip back to the mainland, we managed to fit in a short tour of the Isle of Lewis, taking in the Standing Stones of Calanais and the blackhouse village at Gearrannan, before heading to the ferry terminal.

Highland Schools
21-23 March 2011

In keeping with our aim of taking engaging science activities to the rural parts of Scotland, the team then proceeded further north to the village of Kinlochbervie for our first visit to the high school there. We took over the village hall and conducted an event for pupils from P6 through to S2. It was certainly one of the more unique visits we have undertaken this year.

To round off our North-West tour, we then stopped off at Ullapool High School for sessions aimed at their S1 and S2 pupils. After three years of attempting to make arrangements, we were finally able to visit for the first time.

The Carbon Capture and Storage Interactive -- side viewThe Carbon Capture and Storage Interactive (right), which has been touring schools this year as part of our "Hot Topics in Research" science presentation, also made an appearance at the festival, as part of our public engagement portfolio.

Other events taking place during the Hebridean Science Festival 2011 included two evenings of public talks, a large programme of school engagement activities, the transformation of the Bridge Centre into a Science Centre, as well as a concluding celebratory Ceilidh.

This particular tour would not have been possible without the dedication of the organisers at each of the venues, or without the financial support of the Scottish Government, the EPSRC (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council), SSERC (Scottish Schools Equipment Research Centre), and the Holmes Hines Memorial Fund.

We are grateful for the time and efforts of all of these groups in making our visits possible.

The Scottish Schools Equipment Research Centre
The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
The Scottish Government
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