Hundreds of people visited Bournemouth University (BU) for the opening day of the Festival of Learning.
The 2016 Festival, which aims to share BU’s work and research in an engaging and accessible way, kicked off with a family day at Talbot Campus on Saturday 25 June.
A range of free events and activities for all the family ran throughout the day, with everything from virtual reality surgery simulators to AFC Bournemouth sports activities and a data science workshop on offer.
Youngsters also had the chance to make their own soap and graduation caps, create their own stop-motion animation, and learn more about the fossils of the Jurassic coast.
Other events included a multimedia exhibition showcasing the impact of climate change on the New Forest, interactive demonstrations in BU’s cyber security labs, and free advice and testing around vascular health and stroke prevention.
BU Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney said: “The Festival of Learning is a fantastic celebration of all that we do at Bournemouth University.
“Our research is societally driven so it’s a chance to share our research, and the impact of our research, with the general public through a wide range of really engaging events for all ages.”
The Festival family day also included two free talks by adventurer and author Alastair Humphreys, who shared tales and tips from his adventures – including cycling around the world, rowing across the Atlantic Ocean and walking through India.
Alastair, who also had the chance to explore the Festival of Learning, said: “I’m talking about my adventures large and small and I’m hoping that it will just sow some seeds of adventure in young minds and get people thinking about the possibilities of what they might be able to do.
“It’s also a chance for people to have a look around the great facilities at Bournemouth University, and it’s brilliant to see that it’s a big community event for families, with young children coming to see some of the exciting and really varied research that is happening at the university.”
James and Adam Bice, aged 11 and 9, from Parkstone, attended Alastair Humphreys’ family-orientated talk.
Adam said: “I thought it was really good and I liked the fact that he put up pictures. I learnt that there were lovely places and that you can bike the world.”
James added: “I liked that he talked to everybody and tried to answer all of our questions. I learnt that you don’t actually have to take much on a trip at all to go around the whole world.”
The Festival of Learning is now in its fourth year, with around 100 free events and activities open to the public from Saturday 25 – Wednesday 29 June.
This year the Festival of Learning has also gone global – with around 60 staff and students hosting and supporting parallel events in China and Malaysia.
Professor Vinney added: “Bournemouth University’s footprint globally is growing year on year so it felt appropriate to take our story and our message globally too.
“So it’s a fantastic celebration not just of our achievements here, but also a celebration of our global footprint, which is growing, and also our global partnerships which are going from strength to strength.”
You can find out more about the Festival of Learning, and book free tickets, on the Festival of Learning website