The first few days in a new job tend to be a nerve wrecking experience for most, but not for me! I was asked if I wanted to go to Bestival to take part in The Science Tent. The prospect of taking part in my first student/public engagement event, a week after I had just started was very exciting.
Taking BU’s research to Bestival, Isle of Wight (which is one of the most exciting festivals this country has today) was an opportunity we could not refuse. With capacity exceeding more than 50,000, the opportunity for public engagement was always going to be rife.
Besitvals Peace Hill & Valley played host to the very popular Science Tent, where the BU team solely engaged with more than 1500 members of the festival. We disseminated 1500 wristbands and gave away lots of additional merchandise to get our name out there and recognised. Let’s hope some of them remember!
One activity we had at Bestival was Surprising Skulls. It consisted of a number of replica animal skulls which participants had to identify by examining features such as the type of teeth they have and the position of their eyes. We also encouraged them to engage in brain teasers such as word and colour recognition and how they conflict with each other, this proved to be a fun and humorous activity to the people participating. The enthusiasm for our stall was ever so pleasing for the team which consisted of Barry Squires (Public engagement & Impact Manager) and Sam Squelch (Student Engagement Coordinator) The Primate Activity ran by Fiona Coward and Sarah Elliot were also extremely popular and engaged a lot of attendees. This extremely exciting display gave passers-by research into our ancestors dating back from 7 million years ago and the journey on how we have evolved. The reaction to both displays was filled with growing enthusiasm and a genuine sense of interest into some of the research that was on show, bring on next year!
Does Bestival sounds like something you would like to get involved with? Do you have an exciting research activity that you could showcase? If so, why not register your interest ready for next year. Click here to find out what other exciting and engaging activities took place at The Science Tent last week.