On December 4th, 52 sixth form Engineering students from the prestigious JCB Academy were welcomed to the Churnet Valley Railway at Froghall. Students are currently engaged on the Network Rail challenge which requires them to investigate the Engineering Application of Materials – Students must analyse how and why materials fail and propose mitigating strategies and also redesign some railway components using new and smart materials. The trip to CVR meant that students could get up close and personal with railway components to see how they performed and how they could be improved. Access such as this is not possible on Network Rail.
Thanks to the warm welcome that they received in the tea room, students survived the elements and were treated to lashings of tea and coffee together with a toasty fire during the lectures delivered by Robert Holbrow and Alastair Sweeney from Network Rail. JCB Academy head of sixth form Engineering, Paula Gwinnett said “We feel very lucky to have such a supportive and positive relationship with CVR. The JCB Academy provides a unique context for learning about Engineering and access like this is invaluable – We are very grateful to John Peake and Greg Wilson for whom nothing was too much trouble. The CVR is a real asset not only for education but also for our Engineering heritage.”