There have been big celebrations in past two weeks honouring the UK's science clubs. The British Science Association (BSA) launched the Great British Science Club at Buckingham Palace last week ahead of the main celebrations on 5 July 2017.

Great British Science Club was a nationwide celebratory event to mark the 30th anniversary of the BSA’s hugely successful education programme, CREST Awards. Celebratory events took place across the country over the past week, culminating in hundreds of schools participating on 5 July 2017.

On Tuesday 27 June, students from three local schools were invited to the special, science-themed launch party at the Palace. They met the BSA’s new Royal Patron, HRH The Duke of York, and took part in hands-on science activities, including live demonstrations from TV science presenter and Great British Science Club Ambassador, Fran Scott.

The Duke of York Tweeted from the event at Buckingham Palace

There were events planned in over 300 schools across the country on 5 July, involving up to 25,000 young people. There was also a flagship event at Thorpe Park which included a science fair, self-led science activities in the Park and a free, live show with Fran Scott performing science demonstrations and speaking to young people about her passion for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

 Celebrating 30 years of CREST Awards at Thorpe Park 

On the evening of the 5 July, the BSA’s Chair, Rt Hon the Lord David Willetts, hosted a reception for education stakeholders, policy makers and CREST Award partners at the House of Lords. They celebrated the achievements of the 400,000 students and thousands of educators who’ve been involved in CREST Awards over the last 30 years.

Katherine Mathieson, Chief Executive of the British Science Association, said: “CREST Awards have inspired tens of thousands of young people to enjoy science, and to go on to further study and work in science-based fields. The Great British Science Club is a fantastic way to celebrate this incredible programme and honour the hard work of all those who have been a part of it. I’d like to thank Buckingham Palace and Lord David Willetts for their continuing support, and all the teachers, technicians, parents, youth leaders and young people who have been involved over the years.”

Speaking at the event at Buckingham Palace, HRH The Duke of York said: “Young children are constantly learning about the world around them through experimenting and trial and error. We sometimes fail to recognise this for what it is – using the scientific method. Life is about doing experiments, finding out how things work, and being curious about the world, so I am delighted to see young people being encouraged to cultivate their curiosity in science by the British Science Association.”

Fran Scott, BBC Science Presenter, said: “I love science, and try to pass on this love through my television and stage demonstrations, therefore being part of the Great British Science Club to commemorate the 30th anniversary of CREST is a huge honour. By celebrating science in this way we can highlight just how great and important it is, and I hope generations to come are inspired to get involved.”

Each year, around 30,000 CREST Awards are undertaken by 11-to-19-year-olds; they play an important role in promoting STEM enrichment activities and open-ended project work in schools and science clubs. Through CREST, young people explore the true nature of STEM through well-regarded, high quality and tangible project work.