“Reach for the Sky”, an education resource book produced by the Yorkshire Air Museum and the Royal Aeronautical Society received an enthusiastic endorsement from the Rt. Hon. Rosie Winterton MP, Minister of State for Transport and Minister for The Yorkshire & Humber Regions, at a lively launch ceremony yesterday (Tuesday 24th June.). The event was held at the prestigious London headquarters of the Royal Aeronautical Society, at Hamilton Place on Hyde Park Corner.In her letter of acceptance to the invitation to launch this book, the Rt. Hon. Rosie Winterton, said: “I am delighted to see the diverse and innovative ways that the Yorkshire Air Museum is working with the Royal Aeronautical Society to promote interest in the aerospace industry using the rich history that this centennial year of British powered flight will celebrate.”
Some 27 pupils from Frith Manor Primary School, Barnet, North London, attended the event and displayed projects on the theme of future flight that they had undertaken for the occasion, which caught the attention of the Minister of State and other guests and clearly demonstrated the ideas and ingenuity that lie in the minds of our children, waiting to be developed.
This collaboration between the Yorkshire Air Museum and the Royal Aeronautical Society is indeed a unique venture. With the tremendous support received from Yorkshire Forward, the Regional Development Agency, we are to send a free copy to all the 25,000 primary schools in Britain this year and we don’t believe that any other museum has launched an education resource in such a manner before.
This KS2 level book has been written with the assistance of specialist schools advisors, the M.L.A. and the Government agency “Creative Minds” to fit into the current “STEM” (Science Technology, Engineering and Maths) targets. It is easy to read and covers all the milestones of aviation history and development, including Yorkshire’s rich history in this. It features superb illustrations, ‘Science Bytes’ and activities and is designed for ease of copying for teachers. With the help of Virgin Galactic and EADS / Astrium, the book also covers the exciting developments in ‘passenger space flight’, which will once again fire the imaginations of children. It also explodes some myths about aviation in that Britain has the second largest aviation industry in the world and it is the second largest manufacturing industry in Britain.
As Ian Reed, Museum Director, points out: “We are very keen to engage our children in the science of flight at an early age and to inspire them with both Britain’s, and particularly Yorkshire’s extraordinary heritage in this field. We were delighted with the enthusiasm and interest shown by the Rt. Hon. Rosie Winterton the Minister of State for Transport at the launch of “Reach for the Sky”, acknowledging the importance of this unique project”.
Amongst those present at the launch were Thea Stein, Executive Director of Economic Inclusion, Yorkshire Forward, Sue Gradwell, Chief Executive of North Yorkshire Business & Education Partnership, Ian Reed, Yorkshire Air Museum Director, John Edmonds, Chairman of Trustees of the Yorkshire Air Museum and Amy Parkinson, formerly of NYBEP, who co-wrote the book with Ian Reed.
EADS / Astrium.
Astrium is the subsidiary of European Aeronautical Defence Systems which is developing a European ‘passenger space vehicle’, who along with Virgin Galactic, offered information and images for the book.