Don’t let the kids get bored over the half-term holidays – there are plenty of family-friendly activities to suit teenagers and youngsters alike as part of the Bollington Festival.

In this 50th year of the Bollington Festival there are a series of science events over 17 days from 16 May to 1 June 2014. With a mix of free events and ticketed events with children’s prices just £1 for all science events, you can have fun without breaking the budget.

There’s a 4-day Fab Lab – a free mini science festival with plenty of hands-on activities with a biomedical theme (Sat 24, Sun 25, Mon 26 and Tues 27 May). Come along and feel a real heart, measure your blood oxygen levels before and after exercise, and find out about DNA and fingerprints.

There’s also a unique vegetable orchestra making music on homemade vegetable instruments, with science explanations thrown in. Audience participation essential! (31 May).

For teenagers (and adults!) we have the following:

  • Gaming in the real world – how are computer games helping patients and bomb disposal experts alike? (21 May)
  • “Seeing the skies with other eyes” – what would we see if we had infrared or X-ray eyes? (23 May)
  • A night with the stars, organised with Macclesfield Astronomical Society (25 May)
  • An evening with Lord Robert Winston (28 May)
  • A whistle-stop tour of some of the most exciting new dinosaur finds in the past 12 months from expert Phil Manning (29 May)

A Scarecrow science trail will be running throughout the Festival with biomedical discoveries depicted by scarecrows in public spaces and gardens throughout the town.

The Bollington Festival is run completely by volunteers and is a community event that nevertheless attracts an audience from all over the northwest. Science events were included for the first time in 2009.

More information about the 17-day Bollington Festival can be found at