Engineers of future pit their wits at technology tournament

Rotary Technology Tournament ''Eskdale team, Edd Stephens (correct), Tom Fewlass, Matty Fitzharris, Jack Marsay''w111204e     Picture: Ceri Oakes
Rotary Technology Tournament ''Eskdale team, Edd Stephens (correct), Tom Fewlass, Matty Fitzharris, Jack Marsay''w111204e Picture: Ceri Oakes

MORE than 100 engineers of the future pitted their wits at a technology tournament hosted at Whitby Pavilion.

The event, which has been running for three successive years, was organised by the Rotary Club of Whitby and District and the Whitby Endeavour Rotary Club with help from friends of Rotarians.

Teams were entered at three levels to cover ages from 12 years to 16 plus and represented Whitby’s Caedmon and Eskdale Schools, Whitby Community College, Fyling Hall School, as well as schools out of the area.

Caedmon School won the basic level tournament for the third year running, Bydales School won the intermediate level and Fyling Hall the advanced level.

One of the organisers, Guy Hirst, said most of the schools entered teams for the third time which demonstrates not only the interest the tournaments generate but also their educational importance.

The tournament required the secondary school children to work co-operatively in teams of four, to complete a project given to them on the morning of the event.

The basic project was to design, build and test a crane which would travel to pick up a cylindrical load and transport it to a new location.

The teams were restricted to using only the materials provided, such as wood, cardboard, garden wire, modelling clay, batteries and electric motors.

Skill and ingenuity were needed at each stage, including the operation of the crane and increased difficulties were built into the project at the more senior levels.

Mr Hirst said: “The interest and enthusiasm of the young people was tremendous and the undercroft at the Pavilion remained a hive of industry from the start at 9.45 in the morning to the final testing of models at 2pm when teams at each level could see how each other had managed the project.”

Technology teacher at Caedmon School, Justin Draper added: “All the pupils who have represented the school have found the experience interesting, challenging and enjoyable.

“The criteria for the technology challenge tasks are only presented to the pupils on the day of the event and these appear to have become increasingly complex each year. However, the pupils have risen to this challenge and have been incredibly successful, winning the Basic Category (KS3 age range) consecutively on all three years.”

Glass trophies were presented to the winning teams by Ken Crudgington, the schools’ liaison officer of Cleveland Institution of Engineers.

The organisers would like to thank Scarborough Borough Council, Cleveland Institution of Engineers, The Normanby Charitable Trust, Cummins Darlington Technical Operations, Teesside Components Ltd, and Cleveland Scientific Institute for their sponsorship and the Whitby Pavilion management and staff for their support.