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Evening Meeting With Amanda Mckean, Director Canterbury Festival

30th April 2024
Venue: Cricket Ground

Evening meeting with Amanda McKean, Director, Canterbury Festival.
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Lunchtime Meeting Agm & May Business Meeting

7th May 2024
Venue: Cricket Ground
Lunchtime meeting 12.30pm for 1pm meal Annual General Meeting to be followed by the May Business Meeting.
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Team Eclipse – send-off and car reveal

Three of our members had a wonderful evening at Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School (QEGS) in Faversham at the “send-off” event for Team Eclipse as the team heads off to Singapore for the F1 in Schools World Finals later this week.

Spending time with enthusiastic young people can be truly energising, and that was just how it felt for three of our members (Rtns Brian Dobinson, Mary McGeary and Julie Reza) that attended the send-off party on behalf of our club.

The gathering, held in the school’s new Elizabeth Quinn Theatre, included the three Eclipse team members (Tom, Javier and Evie); the school’s headmaster (David Anderson); Head of Faculty for Creative Arts & Technology (Phil Harvey), other staff, parents and various sponsors and supporters.

The youngsters have done remarkably well in getting the support and sponsorship they need, and the event was a way of them thanking everyone for this backing. We have been very modest sponsors in comparison to some of the big name sponsors such as BAE and Singapore Airlines, but we have been no less enthusiastic in our support for the team, and have shared news about them on many occasions in the past.

Regular readers may recall that we also sponsored a previous team from the school – Team Evolve – who went on to become F1 in Schools World Champions! Our members were delighted to see one Evolve member, Lewis, had joined the gathering; he is now doing very well in his career and has just finished a stint at Aston Martin. He also told us that his team mates George and Freddie were also doing very well in their chosen careers. Asked if taking part in F1 in Schools had helped him at all on his career path, he responded “yes, most definitely!” This was good to know as a key reason for us becoming involved with the project (through our vocational committee) is to help young people in their careers and also encourage engagement with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). 

During the evening’s presentations we heard from Eclipse about their journey and future plans. We also got a taster of the presentation that will be given at the Finals, as well as a sneak peek of the new car design (revealed via their social media later that evening). It was fun to see how – literally – the youngsters have grown since they first got involved in F1 in Schools. We learnt about the incredible success they’ve had with their Primary STEM project, the other activities that they’ve been involved with in order to promote STEM, and Eclipse Earth, their sustainability strategy which we mentioned recently

An interval allowed us to enjoy tasty snacks, test our reaction times on a test starter, and see the primary schools racetrack and some of the cars made by the children. We also had the opportunity to talk to parents who expressed how lovely it was to be involved in such an event as usually all they see is the hard work and challenges the team members face.

At the end of the evening’s presentations Phil enthusiastically commended the team – “They’ve worked as hard as a real F1 team,” he said – from engineering and portfolio development, to social media/other communications, getting sponsorship, and doing outreach work, the youngsters really have done it all.

In return the team also thanked Phil – he has given them great support and will be travelling to Singapore with them.

The end of the evening there was a lovely surprise for us all – a super little video summarising their journey. And finally we got to find out what our little video clip was used for!

We have no idea how the team will do though of course we wish them the very best of luck; no matter what happens they are already winners in our eyes. As one Rotarian put it – they have gained countless skills by taking part in the projects, some of which they may not even appreciate until later in their lives and careers. Moreover, everyone who has interacted with the team, from primary schoolers to engineering experts can’t have helped feeling enthused after interacting with them.

“Go Team Eclipse!”

Want to know more about the team? Click here, where you can also find details of all their social media channels.

Picture: A sneak peek of the car! Picture credit: Team Eclipse/QEGS.

More phtos from the evening can be seen on out Facebook page here



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The Rotary Club of Canterbury
St Lawrence Cricket Ground
Old Dover Road,
Canterbury, Kent,
CT1 3NZ,
United Kingdom

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