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British Science Festival – Bradford, September 2011

A cancer ‘smart bomb’, a non-invasive lie detector and a wheelchair controlled by the movement of the eye were among the world-leading innovations unveiled by the University at the recent British Science Festival. These announcements received attention from around the globe.

Professor Laurence Patterson

A triumphant return 

The University hosted over 80 of the almost 300 Festival events, with many being led by our own academics, unveiling their groundbreaking research and shedding light on a variety of scientific disciplines. The Festival has been running since 1831 and has taken place every year since (apart from the war years). It is hosted each year by an institution renowned for its involvement with science and was last in Bradford in 1873.

There were three parallel programmes of events: a festival for schools and young people; a festival of public engagement with science - including public lectures, informal discussions and hands-on science; and a festival at the frontiers of science bringing the latest from the research frontier to the meetings and the world’s press.


Celebrating a heritage of science 

Festival director Sue Hordijenko described the response to the Festival as “magnificent”. She said: “Some of the major stories we have had have focused on research coming out of the University. Talking to the people who live here, they really feel the Festival has caught the attention of the national media and has put Bradford at the forefront this week.”

The arrival of the BBC’s Bang Goes the Theory team in Centenary Square marked the start of the Festival alongside many other events at the University and across the city as part of the family fun weekend. Professor Robert Winston, Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Dame Ellen MacArthur were amongst the famous faces who joined over 50,000 people here in Bradford throughout the week.