Largest Dorset school STEM event kicks off with a ‘Big Bang’

Home » Company News » Largest Dorset school STEM event kicks off with a ‘Big Bang’

The first Big Bang science and engineering fair for Dorset children was held at the Tank Museum on Wednesday 13 March.

1,700 primary and secondary students arrived to see over 30 exhibitors showcasing the latest use of technology and science in the industry, making it the biggest event of its kind in the county to date.

14 secondary schools attended in the morning, and 13 primary and middle schools came for the afternoon session. They had a chance to get involved in interactive workshops and theatre shows, as well as learn about what a career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) could be like.

Organisers held competitions to encourage students to get hands-on with their own STEM projects before the day.

Senior school age children took part in an innovation competition, while primary age children were asked to design a responsibly sourced lunchbox.

The winners are as follows:


Secondary Winners
Name of SchoolName of prizeProject name
The Thomas Hardye SchoolBest Overall ProjectLand Rover 4×4 in Schools – Panthers
Shaftesbury SchoolHighly Commended ProjectUsing Technology and Engineering to solve the schools recycling problem.
Bournemouth SchoolHighly Commended ProjectWhat size sprint spike is the best for sprinting?
Queen Elizabeth’s SchoolMost Innovative ProjectMagnetic Levitation ‘The Transport of the Future.’
Bournemouth SchoolBest PresentationWhat flour is best for making bread?
Shaftesbury SchoolBest PresentationUsing Google expeditions AR to transport students to threatened environments such as the Great Barrier Reef
Primary Winners (Lunch Box)
Holy Trinity Primary SchoolBest Overall ProjectHygienic Chopsticks
Holy Trinity Primary SchoolFirst Runner UpMunch
Holy Trinity Primary SchoolSecond Runner UpTeam Healthy


Overall winners Thomas Hardye school will now be entered into the national Big Bang competition.

Rosie Knapper, Senior Advisor for Schools and Learning at Dorset County Council said: “Events like this can really help children and young people get a hands-on taste of what a career in STEM could look like. They can see first-hand what skills and expertise they will need to be successful when they join the world of work.

“For primary-aged children, the chance to take part in fun activities that help challenge stereotypes and broaden horizons can help them to make the link between what they are learning in school and the wider world.

“Events like this also highlight the importance of supporting local employers to find their future talent.”

Organised by Dorset County Council and hosted by the Tank Museum, Big Bang South West will return to the Tank Museum next year, promising another line-up of inspiring exhibitors, local and national businesses showcasing a wide range of STEM-related careers information.

The Big Bang Fair is part of a programme of UK-wide events aimed at getting children interested in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths and showing them the career opportunities available in STEM.

Big Bang @Dorset was a collaborative success with support from: The Tank Museum, Dorset LEP, Southern Universities Network (Arts University Bournemouth, Bournemouth University, University of Portsmouth, Southampton Solent University, University of Southampton and University of Winchester), Superior Seals, The Careers and Enterprise Company in Dorset, Dorset Councils Partnership (North Dorset District Council, Weymouth and Portland Council and West Dorset District Council), Dorset Chamber (Young Chamber), STEM Ambassadors, Dorset Engineering & Manufacturing Cluster, CSW Group and Atlas Elektronik.