Social Responsibility


Bluedot Festival

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:06:00 BST

For one weekend in July, the observatory at Jodrell Bank, known for its huge radio telescope, transforms into Bluedot Festival. The site is filled with thousands of campers who come for the fantastic mix of science, art and music, all set against the amazing backdrop of the Lovell Telescope.

The festival blends the frontiers of science and art, allowing people to get hands-on with interactive stalls, talks, performances and more. This fantastic family event was headlined by great bands including The Pixies, Orbital and Alt-J but also showcased some of the fantastic research at the University.

One of the social responsibility team, Sheena Cruickshank, our academic lead for public engagement with research, was working at the festival and tells us something about her experience at the Festival.

"Myself and the team behind Britain Breathing were at the Festival to talk about the citizen science project Britain Breathing.

Britain Breathing is a cross-disciplinary citizen science project which aims to capture data on allergy symptoms such as sneezing, wheezing and itchy eyes in order to map when and where they occur and create an allergy map. Ultimately, the team hope to use this allergy symptom map to better understand why allergies are increasing.

As well as joining in the citizen science project, visitors tested their lung function and created beautiful pieces of art to visualise lung structures. I also gave a talk on the amazing world of parasites and took part in the “Big Question Time” discussion with an amazing team of University scientists - Danielle George, Tim O’Brien, David Kirby, Aravind Vijayaraghavan and chaired by Matthew Cobb. The discussion covered a range of topics including the challenges of engineering, just where water comes from in Space (everything is recycled) and the ethics of space travel."

This feedback perfectly encapsulates the Bluedot Experience:

Bluedot visitor: “Very cool learning new things- thankyou!”

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