Hundreds of visitors have enjoyed a fantastic two days of discovery around the Made In Sleaford event.
The first day focussed on education and business with school parties being shown around the exhibition, organised by NKDC, revealing the amazing diversity of things made and built in Sleaford and the great number of people employed in these industries.
Schools were taken on bus tours courtesy of Sleafordian Coaches looking at some of the town’s industrial past, present and future including the Bass maltings, Cogglesford Mill and a Romano British mint.
On Friday evening Richard Noble was keynote speaker at a business networking event at the National Centre for Craft and Design and spoke about his project to build Bloodhound, the first car to reach speeds of 1,000mph, due to take place next year, but also the important part it is playing in inspiring a new generation of scientists, engineers and designers.
The Bloodhound education team were there with a replica of the rocket car to educate children about some of the amazing engineering facts.
Around the exhibition people could view everything from day-old chicks from Moy Park to instruments by Bridge Violins and White and sentance pianos.
Katie Baxter of Moy Park said: “We have three farms in Sleaford and our agricultural maintenance workshop based on the industrial estate, as well as employing nearly 4,000 people at our Anwick poultry processing factory, so a lot of those come from Sleaford.”
She said as regards innovation, they have a totally automated chicken catcher that avoids any human contact with the live birds. She said: “This is for bio-security and welfare of the birds.”
She added: “Over the last couple of years we have taken part in the NFU Open Farm Sunday events and then we were approached by NKDC to take part in this. It is an eye-opener as I am a local girl but didn’t know some of these businesses existed.”
Paul Bridgewater is co-owner of Bridge Violins, a Sleaford-based manfuacturer of bespoke electric violins and other stringed instruments. At the networking event, they presented a specially-made three-quarter-sized electric violin to eight-year-old Casey-Joan Whyte of Boston who is taught by Sleaford violin teacher Steve Clarke.
She has been playing for just two years and already achieved Grade 4 and has just auditioned for the National Children’s Orchestra.
Mr Bridgewater, who has been running his business with Ceris Jones for 20 years, said: “Her parents commissioned us to make a small, three-quarter violin to be presented at the evening.”
He added: “From a business point of view, for selling stuff, this event has little value, but to inspire people to see that you can do something - anything is possible.
“We have travelled to China, America, Holland and Sweden with our business and met some of the top bands to work with, such as Elbow, Coldplay and Lana Del Ray. That is the value of an event like this. It is about inviting school children in to look and say, they can do that.”