Pupils speed off with top prizes

St Bede's pupils with Professor Brian Cox during the Big Bang Fair.
St Bede's pupils with Professor Brian Cox during the Big Bang Fair.

BRIGHT sparks rubbed shoulders with a host of famous people at a science fair before returning with a clutch of prizes.

Students from St Bede’s Catholic Comprehensive School, in Peterlee, attended the National Science and Engineering competition at The Big Bang Fair, in London, which celebrates the recent major science, technology, engineering and maths projects being carried out by young people.

Among the top names at the event were Prince Andrew and Professor Brian Cox, of BBC2’s Wonders of the Universe.

Team Elite from the school won third place in the final of the Jaguar GT In Schools competition.

The competition saw the youngsters racing against Jaguar apprentices aged around 23.

Team Elite also won the fastest car and best clay model car, with their model racing around a 60ft track in 1.19 seconds.

Another team from the school, called Carbon Fibrez, won the chairman’s award for team display and presentation during the F1 In Schools event at the Big Bang Fair.

To top off the achievements, the school was also named the best National STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) club for the second year running. And to add to the school’s run of success, a safety jacket created by a team from the school called Safety First won national recognition after receiving commercial interest from a number of companies.

Gary Glover, the school’s head of design and technology, said: “We didn’t expect to do so well, we were sitting there quite surprised, especially as it’s not often that anybody wins the STEM club award two years in a row.”

Team Elite appeared in the Mail appealing for sponsorship before they headed to the competition.

Mr Glover added: “It was stiff competition from grammar and private schools with significantly more financial backing behind them so for a comprehensive school from Peterlee to do well was extra special.”