Fun for everyone at the Glasgow Science Festival

A FLOATING lab, scientists doing stand-up and workshops about whisky and coffee are just a few of the dozens of exciting events on show for this year's Glasgow Science Festival.

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Deborah McNeill of the Glasgow Science Festival
Deborah McNeill of the Glasgow Science Festival

Now in its seventh year, the festival – attended by more than 40,000 people last year – has gone from strength to strength and organisers have promised a bigger and better programme this year than ever before.

Launching on June 6 and themed Glasgow Naturally, it offers more than 200 events over 10 days, covering everything from fun days for the family to in-depth discussions on Scotland's contribution to the search for the Higgs Boson particle at CERN, the European laboratory for particle physics in Geneva, Switzerland.

Deborah McNeill, founder and director of the Glasgow Science Festival, said: "What we are trying to do with the festival is showcase research and the researchers that do it in west Scotland.

"I am lucky in that I get to speak to people from the widest range of disciplines, from people working in engineering to finding cures for cancer.

"There are just these incredible stories of what people are working on and we wanted to find a way to share these stories with the wider community.

"The festival is for all ages and all abilities and we want to give researchers the opportunity to talk to people about what they do and vice-versa, give people a chance to find out what is going on in research."

With three categories, the festival offers sessions for all ages and families, adults and schools, and will focus on biodiversity and sustainability.

Sessions will take place in 38 venues across the city, including university campuses, museums, pubs, comedy clubs, cafes, the canal and Bothwell Castle, Lanarkshire.

One of the main events is the Clipperton, a floating lab that will be moored at the Scottish Waterways Trust building at the canal in Cowcaddens.

It will offer activities for families, including an exhibition and workshops in Glasgow, before going off around the canals of Scotland on a four-month tour.

For adults, the Bright Club comedy nights will see researchers and academics doing stand-up gigs across the city.

There is also a new Tasty Science series, which includes an insight into whisky, with master distiller Rachel Barrie and a workshop on coffee with a barista at Artisan Roast.

This year's festival also coincides with the 60th anniversary of the discovery of DNA and a series of sessions will explore this topic.

Conservation charity Froglife will be running pond dipping sessions, frog games and treasure hunts for young explorers, as well as 'pond doctor' question and answer sessions for adults in need of some pond advice.

A series is also planned for all ages to learn about Paisley-born ornithologist Alexander Wilson, who, though little known in his native Scotland, is regarded as the founding father of ornithology in America.

All the subjects addressed at the festival are developed with top researchers and are underpinned with research from west Scotland.

Ms McNeill said this year's festival would be "bigger and better" than ever.

She said: "There is always that fear of sciences – people were put off at school – so the message is there are some great stories, great things to find out about and to be proud of what people are doing here in the city, and there are fun ways to engage with it.

"It is a lot of fun. We have had a lot of people come to the festival and had a great time, so we would love to welcome more people to the events and show them it is a lot more fun and a lot more interesting."

Details of all the events, venues and times can be found at:

Arts and Entertainment

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