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HRH Duke of York makes flying visit to Cambridge businesses and helps to launch The Bridge

By Adrian Curtis

The Duke of York made a whirlwind visit to Cambridge to check on vital pioneering work in the science and technology sectors that he champions.

Hughes Hall launch of The Bridge (11528569)
Hughes Hall launch of The Bridge (11528569)

Prince Andrew’s day in Cambridge last Wednesday (May 22) started at Cambridge Science Centre (CSC), an independent science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) charity, which provides hands-on, experiences in STEM learning.

As patron, the duke received a tour of their headquarters and was shown a number of the exhibits. CSC’s hands-on displays are completely mobile, which allows them to transform an empty space into a hands-on science centre within a few hours. Since opening in 2013, they have reached almost 300,000 people, visited more than 300 schools and held 100 street science pop events.

His Royal Highness then visited Hughes Hall, the University of Cambridge college of which he is an honorary fellow.

Hughes Hall launched its new research impact initiative, The Bridge, which facilitates connections between academic experts and policymakers, practitioners and industry leaders to promote dialogue, understanding and innovation.

Duke of York (11528519)
Duke of York (11528519)

The Duke joined a discussion that explored links between entrepreneurship and The Bridge subject areas: climate change engagement; 100 healthy years; regulating the digital economy; and oracy and teaching philosophy.

Hughes Hall president Dr Anthony Freeling said: “It was a privilege to welcome our honorary fellow, the Duke of York, back to Hughes Hall. His expertise in business and entrepreneurship is a highly valuable resource for us and his support and connections will be critical as we develop The Bridge initiative and strive to translate some of the best thinking on the planet into the best solutions for all.”

The final visit of the day saw the duke at Raspberry Pi, makers of the cheap, credit card-sized computers that help encourage young people into coding. Since its launch in 2012, more than 25 million computers have been sold and more than a million young people have engaged in Raspberry Pi programmes.

The Duke of York learns more about Astro Pi at the Raspberry Pi Foundation (11528508)
The Duke of York learns more about Astro Pi at the Raspberry Pi Foundation (11528508)

Prince Andrew is patron of the Rasberry Pi Foundation and was able to meet staff and learn more about their developments, including the Astro Pi, which has been created by Raspberry Pi with the European Space Agency and allows students to code a special display to be played on the International Space System.

The duke told the team: “Raspberry Pi is one of those organisations that I have been absolutely enthralled by because of what you have enabled.

Duke of York Cambridge Science Centre (11528516)
Duke of York Cambridge Science Centre (11528516)

“The fact that there is this piece of hardware that started this, and that has led to educational work that reaches young people everywhere, is just wonderful.

“In the 21st century, every single person in the workplace is going to have to use and interact with some form of digital technology. The fact that you are giving the next generation the opportunity to get hands-on is fantastic.”


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