Woodford Green pupil reaches final of national science and engineering competition

Benjamin Herbert-Owen, wearing a suit in front of a grey background

Benjamin Herbert-Owen, a year 12 student at Bancroft’s School, is a finalist for the UK Young Scientist of the Year Award. - Credit: Benjamin Herbert-Owen

A pupil from a school in Woodford Green has reached the finals of a national science and engineering competition. 

Benjamin Herbert-Owen, in year 12 at Bancroft’s School, will find out later this month whether he has won the UK Young Scientist of the Year Award at the Big Bang UK Young Scientists and Engineers Competition. 

Benjamin’s project, a prototype bike accessory designed to keep refreshments cool on long journeys, caught the eye of the competition's judges. 

The Bicycle Fridge needed to be environmentally friendly, use sustainable materials, quiet so as not to disturb wildlife, light and easy to carry and have some form of energy supply to cool the inside. 

Benjamin decided to power the fridge using rechargeable batteries charged by solar power as well as a dynamo integrated into the bike’s wheel. 


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The Big Bang competition recognises young people’s achievements in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and aims to provide them with the opportunity to build their skills and confidence through project work. 

Dr Hilary Leevers, chief executive of EngineeringUK, said, “Benjamin from Bancroft’s School really impressed the judges with his project and we’re excited to see how he does at the UK finals.  

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“It is a huge achievement to progress to this stage of the competition and Benjamin should be incredibly proud to take up his place and compete this year."

She said the judges had been "incredibly impressed" by the standard of entries in this year's contest.

“Young people throughout the past 15 months have shown great resilience and determination – they have had to manage multiple lockdowns, periods of remote learning and restricted access to equipment.  

“It’s also not been straightforward for them to work with their project teams when allowed to return to school.  

“To see the ambition, passion and enthusiasm for their projects at such a difficult time is truly inspiring." 

Winners of the competition will be announced on June 23 as part of Big Bang Digital. 

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