Bridge to the Future - Thousands of school kids visit and learn about Queensferry Crossing
The visit of 50 S4 – S6 pupils from Greenfaulds High School triggered the milestone, which has been achieved in only two full academic years - a mark of the project’s ‘outstanding commitment’ to forging an educational legacy.
The Schools Programme began in September 2013, following the opening of the project’s Contact and Education Centre in South Queensferry earlier that year. Since then, over 400 primary and secondary school visits have taken place with schools from all over Scotland visiting to find out more about the construction of the Queensferry Crossing and undertake Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) related challenges.
Mr Brown, who presented the school group with special pictures of the construction of the project, Queensferry Crossing souvenirs and helped the pupils during a group exercise, said:
“The Queensferry Crossing continues to be a remarkable project for a whole host of reasons, and one of the most pleasing for me is an outstanding commitment to capturing imaginations and fostering an educational legacy among our young people.
“It has been great to meet pupils from Greenfaulds High School today - they also represent over 10,000 of their fellow young people from Scotland who’ll one day be able to tell their children and grandchildren about the day they visited the construction of the world famous bridge. Hopefully many of them will go on to build bridges of their own in the future.
“We have never lost sight of how inspiring the construction would be – especially situated alongside the other two iconic Forth Bridges - and the popularity of the Contact and Education Centre has been a real vindication of the importance we have placed in community engagement from day one.
“The Outreach and Education Programme - which includes school visits, technical presentations and a public exhibition - has attracted over 40,000 people so far and we anticipate interest growing further as the bridge reaches its final stages.”
Prior to the start of the 2015/16 academic year, the FRC Project team again wrote to invite schools from across Scotland to participate in the education programme and slots are filling up. This year, the FRC Project team have also developed lesson plans for teachers and associated distance learning materials which are available to schools to use in conjunction with or independent of a visit to the project.
The Project Exhibition re-opened at the Contact and Education Centre on March 7 and due to huge interest in the project will remain open until December 12, this year before it re-opens again on January 30, 2016. There have been almost 4,000 visitors this year to date and over 12,500 visitors since April 2013.
The Presentation Series – featuring more technically-focused talks aimed at industry peers and those in higher education – also ran from March and this year’s final talk will be held at the CEC on Friday October 30. On average over 100 people have been attending each of these popular sessions programmed during 2015.
The wider Outreach and Education Programme has seen project staff present to a combined audience of over 15,000 people so far, at functions both on-site and across Scotland.
- The purpose built FRC Contact and Education Centre (CEC) opened in January 2013 and has been a focal point for community engagement and education with local communities, schools, colleges, universities, industry professionals and international visitors during the FRC Project construction.
- The CEC includes the FRC Project Exhibition within the Exhibition Area which provides visitors with access to information boards about the FRC Project, detailed bridge models, audio/visual materials and also provides spectacular views of the Forth Estuary.
- In April 2013, the new co-located Traffic Scotland National Control Centre (TSNCC) was opened by the then Deputy First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon. The TSNCC is operated under the Traffic Scotland Infrastructures Services contract by Amey.