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EKFB host Construction Day for Waddesdon School

In April, groups of year 8 students from Waddesdon School, near Aylesbury, were given a glimpse of the various roles that come together when tasked with constructing a high-speed railway line. EKFB’s SEE coordinator, Victoria Hingley, led the event alongside EKFB’s geology team and our supply chain partners ASC, Clancy, Enva, FCCS, and PAM. The aim was to get the students hands on with the equipment we use out on-site, demonstrate the importance of collaboration, and highlight that you don’t have to be an engineer to work in engineering.

It was time for the students to roll up their sleeves and have their take on a selection of tools and materials, provided by Clancy, which our operatives use when out on-site. The students also had the opportunity to test their skillset with driving a mini digger, conducting their own earthworks in the sandpit provided.

For the students to get the real feel for being on the job, ASC provided VR headsets where the students were transported out on a works site with their virtual tools, tasked with building a section of an overbridge. For those who remained in the real-world, students were putting their safety knowledge to the test by matching the description to the correct safety icon, an opportunity for the students to learn about the safety guidelines we adhere to when on-site.

Further to ensuring safe practices, FCCS supported the students with their PPE activity. The students had the opportunity to dress in full PPE, recognising the importance of being seen, but also keeping our eyes, head, and hands safe when carrying out the works.

Taking a step back from the engineering perspective, it was important to enlighten the students of the various roles that coincide with the works we do. EKFB’s Geology team brought their extensive fossil collection, showcasing the historical artifacts we have uncovered along the trace, and more importantly, highlighting that working in engineering doesn’t always require you to be an engineer.

Our occupational health services PAM, supported by our Wellbeing Champions, were also present with discussing the importance of being fit to work, and with the use of some helpful drunk impairment googles, demonstrating the dangers of coming onto site when you’re not feeling 100%.

To add some healthy competition amongst the students, Enva, our recycling supply chain partner, brought their mini remote-controlled recycling van where the students had to drive through the cones to get their recycling van safely to the finish line. The quickest lap being proudly displayed on the board, and some prizes to be won as a reward.

EKFB’s SEE Coordinator, Victoria Hingley, had this to say about the event: “It was a pleasure to be able to host a Construction Day for Year 8's at Waddesdon School. Not only did we have the chance to work on STEM activities and teach the students about some of the disciplines involved in our project, but we were also able to embody the advice of being good neighbours and helping those in your community.”

We would like to give a special thanks to Victoria for organising a fantastic day for the students of Waddesdon School and thank all our volunteers for giving up their time and resources to make the day a success.


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