Record number of visitors attend The Big Bang Fair
- Over 80,000 visitors across four days of The Fair
- 15% more visitors than in 2016
- 10% of UK secondary schools registered
- Equal gender split in 11-14s
The Big Bang Fair 2017 was the most successful yet, with unprecedented attendance every day, seeing well over 80,000 people visit across the four days, an increase of 15% compared to last year. More than 10% of all UK secondary schools registered and among our key target audience of 11-14 year olds, an equal number of boys and girls attended.
Visitors were treated to hundreds of hands-on STEM activities, workshops and stage shows. They also had the chance to speak to professional engineers and scientists who had volunteered their time to inspire the next generation. The number of careers conversations at the Careers Cabin and with Careers Captains reached almost 10,000, over double the 2016 number.
It is the huge collaborative effort from across the community that makes The Big Bang Fair a success. Joining the likes of BAE Systems, Airbus, National Grid, Rolls Royce, Sellafield and Siemens who have been with The Fair since its inaugural year in 2009, new sponsors this year included: Air Products, Aveva, DE&S, Interserve, GKN, Meccano, Roche, Specsavers, Staffordshire University and Zeiss.
The Fair attracted widespread media interest across print and broadcast. National broadcast included two BBC Breakfast sofa slots and live coverage with Steph McGovern throughout the Breakfast show on the Thursday.
The Fair hosted the finals of The Big Bang Competition, which saw 600 young people pitch their science and engineering projects to judges. The Big Bang Competition is an annual contest designed to recognise and reward young people's achievements in all areas of STEM, as well as helping them build skills and confidence in project-based work.
David Bernstein (16) and Sankha Kahagala-Gamage (16) from Loughborough Grammar School were crowned UK Young Engineers of the Year for their MediVest invention - a vest that detects epileptic seizures eight minutes before they occur. George Rabin (14), Ed Thurlow (15) scooped the GSK UK Young Scientists of the Year award for their project Do birds have a favourite colour?
Paul Jackson, Chief Executive of EngineeringUK which organises The Big Bang Fair and Competition said: 'We are delighted that The Big Bang Fair continues to be a source of STEM inspiration for young people. The commitment of the industry and wider community to The Fair saw classroom learning to life and young visitors, their teachers and parents engaged in meaningful careers conversations with professionals. We have already been approached by sponsors wanting to sign up for the tenth Big Bang Fair in 2018, which highlights the ongoing commitment to inspire the next generation’.
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