Pupils bid for rocket record

Pupils from Red Rose School take part in a world record attempt at launching bottle rockets.  Matthew Fisher and Lewis Palin.
Pupils from Red Rose School take part in a world record attempt at launching bottle rockets. Matthew Fisher and Lewis Palin.
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Youngsters at Fylde coast schools are all fired up thanks to a truly explosive world record attempt.

Red Rose School in St Annes and Manor Beach Primary School in Cleveleys joined forces with scientists at NASA in an attempt to break the record for the most water-powered bottle rockets launched globally in 24 hours.

Children launched lemonade bottles more than 50 metres up in the air with the help of Fleetwood science teacher Steve Bird.

He said: “We don’t know officially if we’ve broken the record yet.

“We videoed everyone at the launch and we’ve sent it off to be judged. The kids loved it and they thought it was great.

“They were very, very surprised. The bottle rockets don’t look like anything special so they thought it was just an old lemonade bottle, but it actually flies up about 50 metres. All the kids were very excited and enthused by it. And hopefully we managed to trick them into learning something about science as well!

“I’m actually due to start working at Red Rose School next term and they asked me to go in to introduce myself to the pupils and do some fun science activities with them.

“I think I made a good first impression!”

The world record attempt is a celebration of a joint space mission by NASA, the University of Central Lancashire, and Harvard Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory to take high resolution images of the sun. The project is supported by water-powered bottle rocket company Rokit.

Steve said: “It’s a case of planting small seeds. If we can spark an interest in something the children will be motivated to learn and achieve more. I’m hoping that from this we will end up with the official Guinness world record.

“But even if we don’t I’m going to ask NASA to send congratulatory emails to both of the schools. How often does anybody get a message from NASA?”