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Science hits the park

Getting up close to tarantulas, finding out how to make renewable plastics from microbes and an interactive brain funfair are just some of the activities on offer at Science in the Park at Wollaton Hall on 7th March.

Science in the park stand

The popular one-day event is being run by the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University as part of British Science Week and is a free, family friendly day packed full of activities to celebrate science, technology, engineering and maths.

Many of the activities give visitors the chance to get hands-on and the team from the University of Nottingham’s ‘Spiderlab’ will be showing their ‘Marvellous Minibeasts’. There will be tarantulas and scorpions on display, plus giant millipedes and hissing cockroaches for people who are brave enough to hold!

There will also be activities run by researchers from the Green Chemicals team showing how chemicals can be used in a more environmentally friendly way to create new products, with one activity where children can see how enzymes break down by using their spit to break down starch.

The wildlife of Wollaton Park will also be featured as part of the fair with Nottingham Trent University showing how ducks keep themselves dry on their Nature’s Raincoats exhibit.

The activity draws inspiration from nature, using a stuffed duck and dried lotus leaves as examples, to show how nature can keep itself dry. RSPB will also be guiding a nature walk spotting some of the birds and habitats on the park.

Speaking of the event, Dr Michael Loughlin, Principle Lecturer at Nottingham Trent University said: “This is such a valuable event to take part in for staff, students and  especially visitors of all ages. It is a great way to introduce our students to the importance of public engagement in science and to showcase to the local community the work done in NTU as well as introducing them to the next generation of scientists”

Dr Sam Tang, Public Awareness Scientist at the University of Nottingham is the lead organiser of the event, she says: “Science in the Park is always hugely popular and we’re delighted to be bringing it to Wollaton Park again this year, which we can only do with the support of all our amazing volunteers. It’s a fantastic family event and is a great way to get children excited about science with plenty of hands-on activities that will get them thinking – and smiling!”

For any budding scientists keen to share their ideas there is a Science Fair competition as part of the day which is an opportunity for children to use their imagination to create a science project and present it to an audience at the event – this could include creating a model, designing and experiment or making a poster. There are 3 categories and certificates and prizes are available for the best one in each category.

The event runs from 11am – 3pm on Saturday 7th March, for more information go to:

  • Notes for editors

    Notes to editors

    Press enquiries please contact Emily Oakden, Communications Executive, on telephone +44 (0)115 848 5376, or via email

    About Nottingham Trent University

    Nottingham Trent University (NTU) was named University of the Year 2019 in the Guardian University Awards. The award was based on performance and improvement in the Guardian University Guide, retention of students from low-participation areas and attainment of BME students. NTU was also the Times Higher Education University of the Year 2017, and The Times and Sunday Times Modern University of the Year 2018. These awards recognise NTU for its high levels of student satisfaction, its quality of teaching, its engagement with employers, and its overall student experience.

    The university has been rated Gold in the Government’s Teaching Excellence Framework – the highest ranking available.

    It is one of the largest UK universities. With nearly 32,000 students and more than 4,000 staff located across four campuses, the University contributes £900m to the UK economy every year. With an international student population of more than 3,000 from around 100 countries, the University prides itself on its global outlook

    The university is passionate about creating opportunities and its extensive outreach programme is designed to enable NTU to be a vehicle for social mobility. NTU is among the UK’s top five recruiters of students from disadvantaged backgrounds and was awarded University of the Year in the UK Social Mobility Awards 2019. A total of 82% of its graduates go on to graduate entry employment or graduate entry education or training within six months of leaving. Student satisfaction is high: NTU achieved an 87% satisfaction score in the 2019 National Student Survey.

    A total of 82% of its graduates go on to graduate entry employment or graduate entry education or training within six months of leaving. Student satisfaction is high: NTU achieved an 87% satisfaction score in the 2019 National Student Survey.

    NTU is also one of the UK’s most environmentally friendly universities, containing some of the sector’s most inspiring and efficient award-winning buildings.

    NTU is home to world-class research, and won The Queen’s Anniversary Prize in 2015 – the highest national honour for a UK university. It recognised the University’s pioneering projects to improve weapons and explosives detection in luggage; enable safer production of powdered infant formula; and combat food fraud.

Science hits the park

Published on 20 February 2020
  • Category: Press office

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