Cumbrian Children take part in global Lego competition

FIVE teams of schoolchildren from Cumbria with amazing robotics skills are celebrating

winning through to the national finals of a global Lego competition.

The FIRST Lego League, designed to inspire the science and technology leaders of

tomorrow, attracts 310,400 participants in 38,800 teams from 100 countries around the


Across Cumbria a record 72 teams have taken part in this year’s competition in regional

finals in Barrow, Workington and for the first time in Carlisle.

Winners of each of the five finals are now looking forward to competing in the national

finals in Bristol on February 22, ahead of the world finals in the USA later in the year.

The five teams going through to the UK finals are Carlisle’s Austin Friars School with

two teams, one senior and one junior, Gosforth Primary School, and St Bernard’s

Catholic High School and St Paul’s Junior School (both in Barrow).

The five Cumbria finals days, organised by The REACT Foundation and C-STEM,

concluded with the last event held at Lakes College, Workington on Wednesday.

C-STEM co-director Fran Ward said: “I am speechless. It has been another fantastic


“I love the attitude of the students who never give up and keep learning and trying new


“It’s nice to see some of our primary pupils now entering as part of senior teams and

really pushing the standard of the competition higher than ever, which takes us one step

closer to having a Cumbria team in the world finals.”

One of the competition’s biggest advocates, Pete Woolaghan, co-founder of REACT

Engineering and the charitable REACT Foundation, said: “There’s magic happening

here. You see the looks on the young people’s faces, the life skills they are learning. If

their robot doesn’t do exactly what they want it to, they take it away, work it out, and

come back and have another go, that fast learning is so valuable and so important.”

Pete wants businesses and organisations throughout Cumbria to help the county reach

a milestone 100 teams next year. “By taking a ‘Team Cumbria’ approach we want the

whole of the county to get involved which means more teams in Carlisle next year and

more teams in the central Lake District.”

Business and organisations in Cumbria who support the FIRST Lego League include:

REACT Engineering, Createc, Cavendish Nuclear, Iggesund, Direct Rail Services,

LLWR, Sellafield, Siemens, Copeland Borough Council, Allerdale Borough Council,

Energus, Cumbria LEP, University of Cumbria, Furness College, Lakes College, and

The Institution of Engineering and Technology.