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Building bridges with youngsters

A joint initiative by ICE North East and North West saw 150 school children take part in three days of bridge building last week.

Pupils from 10 schools across the regions participated in the construction of a 7m span cable stayed bridge using special equipment, and tested its strength by walking across it.

Carillion Civil Engineering transported the cable stayed bridge kit from ICE East Midlands. The children, from Years 5 and 6, also built model ‘truss’ bridges using nuts, bolts and paper tubes, testing the strength of the paper bridges by loading them with weights.

Regional director ICE North West Alan Butler said: “By promoting this interactive style of learning, we can show the value of civil engineering in an enjoyable way.

“I’m sure this “hands-on” approach has really appealed to the pupils and caught their imaginations.”

Teamwork

His colleague Stephen added: “It was great to see pupils from the North East and North West working together in teams. “All the children seemed to have had fun whilst working with the civil engineers and hopefully they have all learnt something too.”

The activities took place at Ridley Hall near Haydon Bridge. with pupils attending from Warwick Bridge Primary School, Fir Ends Primary School, Raughton Head CE School, Brampton Primary School, Lees Hill CE Primary School, Blackford CE Primary School, Stoneraise Primary School, Alston Primary School, Castle Carrock School, Nenthead Primary School and Allendale Middle School.

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