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  • James Ward known as Mark James T/A as Car Care Automotive Great Yarmouth Guilty of Handling Stolen Car Parts

    James Ward known as Mark James was found guilty last week for handling stolen car parts from his business called Car Care Automotive. Unit 6 Suffolk Rd Great Yarmouth.. Phone number 01493 717767
    A Subaru Impreza was stolen from High Wycombe, an area where Ward lived at the time of the theft. The car was broken up for parts by Ward. He has also set up a new business that deals with Subaru’s. The business is in Great Yarmouth, Car Care Automotive. Unit 6 Suffolk Rd. Phone number 01493 717767.
    Thames Valley Police raided Car Care Automotive on the 24/2/15 and found a few parts left from the stolen Subaru. Ward was bailed until April. On the 20/4/15 Thames Valley Police charged Ward with handling and selling stolen goods. Ward has even put parts from the stolen car onto other cars.
    On the 6/5/15 Ward pleaded guilty to breaking the Subaru, knowing it was stolen and selling it for parts.
    Anyone with a Subaru are advised to be careful dealing with the business known as Car Care Automotive at Great Yarmouth. The Court Order was made against James Mark Ward at High Wycombe Court. The Case number is 431500197216/1 6th May 2015. This article is printed in good faith from verified data and is in the interest of public awareness.The business Care Care Automotive at Yarmouth
    should not be confused with any other business with a similar name.

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  • Games Spot Reviews: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan Review

    Without a doubt, Mutants In Manhattan is a disappointment, one multiplied several times over not just by its pedigree, but by the fact that the ingredients for a good game are present. Bringing the Turtles to life using the same attractive, cel-shaded style as the simple-but-satisfying Transformers: Devastation is the right choice. Sticking to the beat-em-up genre that has served the Turtles so well since 1989 is another right choice.

    read more

  • Games Spot Reviews: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - Blood and Wine Review

    “You can smell the delicate flowers,” says the duchess to Geralt of Rivia, and in that moment, you might believe that you can smell them, too. Like the full game, The Witcher 3’s final expansion, Blood and Wine, has a way of expressing its sensory delights so fully and richly that you could be convinced you really do feel the rain pouring on your face or the pesky tickle of a mosquito buzzing near your ear. That The Witcher 3 continues to look and sound so lavish is unsurprising, yet Blood and Wine’s visuals are even bolder and more vivid than the main game’s.

    read more

  • In Style Fashion News Feed: When Is Black Friday? And How To Shop The Sales Like A Pro
    Black Friday, the biggest (and most daunting) day in the shopping year, is over and Cyber Monday is here - so get clued up on the fashion, beauty, home and lifestyle brands taking part in the epic sales...
  • Games Spot Reviews: Kirby: Planet Robobot Review

    With plenty of wonderful games tied to his name, I'll never understand why Kirby isn't paraded around as prominently as Nintendo's other mascots. Kirby: Planet Robobot is the perfect example: it's another great Kirby side-scrolling platformer, and yet it's been largely flown under the radar since it was announced.

    read more

  • Games Spot Reviews: Overwatch Review

    Overwatch is an exercise in refined chaos. There are multitudes of layers hiding beneath the hectic surface, and they emerge, one after another, the more you play. This is a shooter that knows how to surprise, one that unfolds at a frantic pace, one that takes a handful of great ideas, and combines them into something spectacular.

    read more

  • Games Spot Reviews: Fallout 4 Far Harbor Review

    After dozens of hours in the rough-and-tumble Commonwealth, the coast of Maine sounds like the perfect place for a sojourn in Fallout 4. Enjoy a boat ride; meet new people; solve a mystery with your best synthetic friend--what's not to love?

    read more

  • Games Spot Reviews: Hitman Go VR Review

    Hitman Go is an excellent example of a game that takes core elements from a franchise and turns them into something wholly different, while feeling through and through like it belongs. As you solve its puzzles, you feel like you're making your way towards an assassination target, completely undetected. It's marvelous how a simple and engaging puzzle game can be nothing like its precursor yet maintain a similar spirit. It's something that carries over to virtual reality but isn't helped by it--instead, it makes a poor case for why you should play it in VR at all.

    read more

  • Games Spot Reviews: Shadow of the Beast Review

    Those of us who read our game manuals cover to cover in the '80s were often treated to verbose backstories that help set the scene. These introductions provided context that was often missing within the game, and a deeper understanding of the hero’s motivation. In its modern reimagining of Shadow of the Beast, Heavy Spectrum brings one of these decades old text descriptions to life.

    read more

  • Games Spot Reviews: Party Hard Review

    After a long day of work, you come home exhausted, make yourself dinner, take a quick shower, watch some television or play a video game. Then you try to get some sleep. After a few unsuccessful hours of tossing and turning, it’s already 3AM. You lie in your bed wide awake. The massive college party next door, with its obnoxious electronic music, isn't letting up. Do you complain? Do you call the cops? Nope. Instead, you put on a hockey mask, grab a butcher’s knife, and kill everyone at the party.

    read more

  • Games Spot Reviews: Total War: Warhammer Review

    Screeching gears, rhythmic boot steps, and the soft crunch of fresh snow. These were the first notes of my invasion. I sought the Dwarfen capital of Karak Varn. The Dwarfs, hardy and resilient though they may be, were a thorn for my new allies, the green-skinned Orcs and goblins. I held my siege for weeks, and while my foes’ numbers dwindled, mine grew. After each clash, I wrenched the newly dead from the earth and added them to my fiendish, Vampire hordes. Siege engines ready, and carried yon by fresh Dwarfen zombies, I steeled my undead warriors for the final assault.

    read more


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  • Motorbike scheme breaks cycle of unemployment in Tanzania

    An innovative ‘revolving motorcycle project’ set up by an academic at The University of Manchester is changing the lives of young people in Tanzania.

    Dr Nicola Banks, of the Global Development Institute (GDI) has been working in Arusha, northern Tanzania, researching the social impacts of youth unemployment. After seeing first-hand how young people were struggling to earn a living, Nicola designed a scheme that helps them gain financial independence.

    Youth unemployment is a big problem in Tanzania. In the low-income community where Dr Bank’s research is based, around 70% of young men lack stable jobs.

    One of the most popular ways for young men to earn a living is by becoming a Piki Piki (motorbike taxi) driver. But most drivers do not own their own motorcycles outright, instead spending a majority of their weekly earnings on renting their vehicles. This can cost around 6000 Tanzanian shillings a day (£1.85), leaving the drivers with very little money to live on, let alone save for longer term goals.

    Dr Banks, a Future Research Leader at GDI, came up with the scheme after meeting a local Piki Piki driver who was struggling to save money for university.

    She said: “My research in Arusha shows above all that life is incredibly tough. It is an ongoing struggle for young people. I was lucky enough to meet an inspiring young man called Bakari who was well educated, very hardworking and had grand plans. But I was frustrated after the meeting as I knew unless there was a radical change in his life, there wasn’t going to be anyway he could meet those plans.”

    Working with local NGOs, Slum Dwellers International (SDI) and Tamasha Vijana, Dr Banks designed a project to work with Bakari and some of his fellow Piki Piki drivers, blending concepts of asset transfer programmes, traditional savings groups and social enterprise to illustrate a new and innovative model for working with young people.

    Along with Executive Director of the GDI, Professor David Hulme, Dr Banks personally donated the group’s first motorcycle. Now the project is up and running, the group has purchased their second motorbike and are close to buying their third. Long term, the scheme has the potential to triple the take-home income of the drivers, allowing them to plan and invest for the future.

    Dr Banks said: “The concept of the savings group is simple. The first member receives a motorcycle and puts the 6,000 shillings usually spent on rental into a group savings account instead. Once there is enough money to purchase a second bike, two drivers then save until there is enough to buy a third and so on.

    “Once all six members of the savings group own their own bike they continue to save until a seventh motorcycle is bought. This motorcycle is passed onto another savings group for the process to start again, potentially making it a scalable and sustainable business model.”

    Bakari said: “I have always struggled with my life, but life always goes on. I have never stopped struggling and that is why I joined this project. But now, in my community, I am a role model. I am confident, I am no longer afraid of life. My life is my own responsibility, and not that of anyone else.”

    Every year an estimated 800,000 young men and women enter the labour market in Tanzania. These include school and college graduates and people who have migrated to urban areas from the countryside. The University has produced a short film about the scheme, its impact on the community and its potential for the future.

  • Employment centre run by The University of Manchester wins major award

    The University of Manchester is celebrating after The Works, an employment centre in Moss Side set up by the university to help local people to find jobs at the university and further afield, won the Social Impact prize at the 2016 Guardian Sustainable Business Awards.

    The Guardian’s prestigious awards are given to organisations that put sustainability at their heart by undertaking social and environmental projects that produce lasting impacts. They are acknowledged as one of the world’s most authoritative voices on sustainability, and the judges include Friends of the Earth, Climate Outreach, the Food Ethics Council, environmentalists and sustainability specialists.

    The Works was established as a one-stop-shop to support local people to find jobs, develop their skills and access training courses and financial advice and services. It offer advices and guidance for those seeking work, as well as providing support to people looking to start their own business.

    The centre has got more than 3,000 Greater Manchester residents back into work since it was established by the university in 2011, almost all of whom were previously unemployed. Most of the job opportunities are in non-academic areas such as catering, administration and construction. The Works also acts as a go-between for other local employers, many of which are small enterprises that lack the resources to identify potential recruits.

    As part of its remit, The Works connects people out of work with appropriate training and work preparedness courses. As the centre is embedded within the university’s overall recruitment and human resources systems, its staff are able to flag upcoming job opportunities to potential recruits.

    “We were delighted to be shortlisted, but actually winning the award is a huge achievement for the University and for everyone at the Works. Working with our partners, particularly Manchester Growth Company, was critical to our success. Sustainability and social responsibility can be a very tough job and it’s fantastic to see the hard work recognised. This is a huge profile raiser, increasing awareness of the wider work of the University and our sustainability drive,” Steve added.

    The University is not just celebrating success in this category – one of its former students, Rachel Bradley, also won the ‘Unsung Hero’ award for her work leading B&Q’s sustainability programme, ‘One Planet Home’. Under her leadership, the DIY retailer has moved to 100% responsibly sourced timber, and is working towards all products being peat-free.

    “One Planet Home has been the umbrella for a range of exciting projects over the years,” said Rachel. “I’m not sure I can take credit for any of them, but I have been privileged to be involved with some amazing people who have found a way to include consideration of sustainability in their work and exceed everyone’s expectations.”

  • Manchester academic welcomes the age of citizen science

    Professor of Radio Frequency Engineering Danielle George has spoken about the value of citizen science, and the importance of raising public awareness of the positive impact engineering has on the world, at the annual Cockcroft Rutherford lecture for friends and alumni of The University of Manchester.

    The lecture is held every year in honour of two of the University’s 25 Nobel Prize winners, Sir John Cockcroft – who was instrumental in the development of nuclear power - and Lord Ernest Rutherford, whose work led to the first splitting of the atom. Speakers at the prestigious talk in previous years have included Professor Brian Cox, Sir Andre Geim and Professor Dame Sally Davies.

    Professor George was recently described by the Guardian as one of the UK’s heroes in science. She delivered the hugely prestigious Royal Institution 2014 Christmas Lecture, and more recently presented at the acclaimed TEDGlobal Conference. She is involved in the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), the world's largest ever radio telescope, which is made up of an array of thousands of dishes spread out in remote areas across the planet and headquartered at The University of Manchester’s Jodrell Bank.

    Professor George is also the UK lead for amplifiers for the Atacama Large Millimeter Array telescope, and has also worked with NASA and the European Space Agency on the development of instrumentation for researchers exploring the Big Bang.

    Speaking to the 800-strong audience at the lecture, which was chaired by President and Vice Chancellor Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, she said:

    She also spoke about the possibility of delivering a successful engineering project by crowdfunding, or of citizen data scientists helping astrophysicists to study the dawn of time. “In this era of Big Data and Smart Machines, we need help to solve the huge technical challenges we face in the next generation of instrumentation. We need to embrace technology, and inspire the people most proficient at understanding and developing it.”

    Professor George concluded her speech by encouraging everyone to play their part in science and inviting the audience members to build a robot for her Robot Orchestra project, which aims to create an environmentally-friendly ensemble made up of ‘robots’ performing with instruments and recycled materials. The public is being encouraged to get involved by salvaging and donating unused technology, building robots and instruments, and writing computer code. Rehearsals are currently taking place, and the orchestra will give its full debut performance in July during the Euroscience Open Forum - Europe’s largest science conference.

  • Major new report identifies child suicide risk factors

    Bereavement, bullying, exams and physical health conditions such as acne and asthma are some of the experiences linked to suicide in children and young people according to a new report by The University of Manchester’s National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide and Homicide by People with Mental Illness (NCISH).

    Researchers studied the reports from a range of investigations and inquiries on 130 people under the age of 20 in England who died by suicide between January 2014 and April 2015, extracting information about their personal circumstances that the reports highlighted. This is the first time there has been a national study of suicide in children and young people in England on this scale.

    The researchers found that 28% of the young people who died had been bereaved, in 13% there had been a suicide by a family member or friend. 36% had a physical health condition such as acne or asthma, and 29% were facing exams or exam results when they died. Four died on the day of an exam, or the day after.


    Internet use related to suicide was found in 23% of the deaths. This was either searching for information about suicide methods, being a victim of online bullying or posting suicidal thoughts online. Bullying overall had occurred in 22% of cases, mostly face-to-face rather than online.

    Over twice as many males as females died by suicide and there were five deaths in those aged under 14. Hanging was the most common method, accounting for 63% of deaths followed by jumping from a height or in front of a train - methods that show a strong lethal intent.

    Excessive alcohol or drug use was more common in older teens, and 54% overall had previously self-harmed. In the week before they died, 10% had self-harmed and 27% had told someone of suicidal ideas. 43% had no contact with any services.

    Professor Nav Kapur, NCISH Head of Suicide Research said: “Self-harm is strongly associated with increased future risk of suicide and is one of the main warning signs. It is crucial that there is improved help for self-harm and access to mental health care. However, with the variety of factors we found with this study, it is clear that schools, primary care, social services and youth justice all have a role to play.”

    This study is the first phase, comprising people under 20 years of age in England and a linked academic paper is published on Thursday May 26th in The Lancet Psychiatry. A larger study widened to the UK and including those under 25 years of age will be published in 2017 and include recommendations for services.


  • Researchers raise concerns over eCig safety

    Thousands of electronic cigarette users are risking dangerous levels of lung inflammation, the first study of its kind has revealed.

    Dr Andrew Higham from The University of Manchester says the vapour which e-smokers inhale contains formaldehyde and acrolein – similar to traditional cigarettes - which could be harmful if taken over the long term.

    In research published in the open access journal Respiratory Research, Dr Higham examined the effect of e-cig exposure on human white blood cells taken from 10 non smokers

    The research was funded by the North West Lung Centre, which is based at the University Hospital of South Manchester NHS Foundation Trust (UHSM). The research was conducted at UHSM’s Wythenshawe hospital, and the University's Manchester Institute of Biotechnology, where three brands of e-Cigarette were investigated.

    The raised activity of neutrophils in response to e-Cigarette exposure is similar to that observed in the presence of traditional cigarettes and is a characteristic of the debilitating lung condition Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, an illness found in traditional smokers.

    The research will fuel the debate on the safety of e-Cigarettes: this week, for example, the Welsh Government dropped a ban on the use of e-cigarettes in enclosed public spaces.

    There are an estimated 3 million users of electronic cigarettes in the UK. E-Cigarettes are often used to avoid the unwanted effects of traditional cigarettes, such as causing pulmonary inflammation.

    However the results raise concerns over the safety of e-cig use.

    Dr Higham said: “Our research shows quite clearly that there are risks associated with long-term use of these devices in terms of pulmonary inflammation.

    “There has been a lot of public discussion on e-Cigarettes. But we think that the public needs to be aware of the potential harm these devices may cause which will empower users to make informed decisions.”

  • WATCH: Professor Danielle George's Cockcroft Rutherford Lecture

    Professor George's talk on the role of citizens in engineering will be broadcast live this Thursday, 26 May

    Can you deliver a successful engineering project by crowdfunding? Will citizen data scientists help astrophysicists study the dawn of time?

    Watch live from 6pm BST on Thursday, 26 May as Danielle George, Professor of Radio Engineering here at the University, discusses the role of citizens in engineering projects at our annual Cockcroft Rutherford Lecture, and will get everyone in the audience participating in a project of her own.

    The Cockcroft Rutherford Lecture is the Division of Development and Alumni's flagship event for friends and alumni of the University. Previous hosts have included Professors Brian Cox, Michael Wood and Dame Sally Davies.


  • Researchers create innovative instrument to test the next generation of electronic devices

    Researchers including a team from The University of Manchester have created a table-top instrument which can perform measurements that were only previously possible using enormous machines at a handful of large laboratories around the world. This means that research into the development of next generation electronic devices employing 2D materials can now be done at just about any research university.

    Since the 1950s, experiments conducted with magnetic fields have played a pivotal role in the development of semiconductors devices such as transistors and light-emitting diodes that have changed the world. Previously, scientists have had to visit huge facilities such as the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory in the USA to probe the fundamental structure of materials to better understand and manipulate their properties. However, such facilities are extremely scarce, and scientists must compete with others for valuable time on the machines.

    Dr Darren Graham and a team of researchers from the University of Manchester’s Photon Science Institute have collaborated with colleagues from the University of Cambridge and industry partners from Germany to develop the new instrument. The new magnet is compact enough for a table-top machine, yet the magnet can only generate a field in short pulses that each last for a fleeting one hundredth of a second.

    The team worked with researchers from manufacturers Laser Quantum to incorporate lasers into the new instrument which are more than 10 times quicker than those found in typical ultrafast laser systems. This allowed them to increase the number of measurements during one magnetic pulse to around 100 - previous experiments with a similar magnet system were limited to 4 measurements per pulse.

    Ultimately, the team hopes their new instrument could facilitate rapid progress in many areas of semiconductor device development. The system can be easily moved to different universities, and it makes it easy to think of a measurement, and simply perform it the next day, without having to apply for time at a national magnet facility, the researchers say.

    “We’re sure that when people realise that we can do such measurements in the lab they will be lining up to use our instrument. We’ve already been contacted by several groups interested in having measurements made on their samples,” Dr Graham said.

    The researchers describe their work in this paper in the journal Applied Physics Letters, from AIP Publishing.

  • Pioneering Salford Lung Study achieves world first

    Healthcare professionals from eight organisations across Greater Manchester have collaborated to deliver the initial results of the Salford Lung Study (SLS). The study involved over 2,800 consenting patients, supported by 80 GP practices and 130 pharmacies in Salford and the surrounding Greater Manchester area.

    This ground-breaking study, sponsored by GSK, examined the safety and effectiveness of a new treatment for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This was delivered in partnership with NorthWest EHealth (NWEH), The University of Manchester, Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, CK Aspire, Salford CCG, University Hospital of South Manchester, South Manchester CCG and NIHR Clinical Research Network: Greater Manchester.

    It is the world’s first digitally enhanced Randomised Controlled Trial (RCT) to include a broad and inclusive population of patients in an everyday clinical practice setting, embracing a novel approach to clinical trial design. This provides researchers with a breadth of clinical data that demonstrates the healthcare interactions of the everyday lives of patients and the way they use their medicines.

    Conventional RCTs are usually conducted following strict inclusion criteria, which often exclude those patients with other multiple conditions. SLS was designed to include those patients who would often be excluded from a traditional randomised trial, for example individuals also being treated for other chronic diseases. This inclusive approach is important because it is more realistic of everyday practice and is therefore representative of a much wider patient population. The data provided by SLS will complement the existing data provided by the conventional RCT.

    University of Manchester Health Informatics researchers have worked with both the NHS in Salford and GSK to create an environment in which electronic health records could be used to extend clinical trials in near real-time. From early studies with GSK’s former Information Factory over ten years ago to the current Salford Lung Study, there has been a forward-looking informatics research and development partnership between the organisations.

    This collaborative study was placed in Salford because of the existing infrastructure of integrated electronic health medical records. The study relied on bespoke software, developed by NWEH and securely hosted within the NHS network, which integrated the electronic medical records of consenting patients across all of their everyday interactions with their GPs, pharmacists and hospitals. This linked database system allowed close monitoring of patients’ safety in near real-time, but with minimal intrusion into their everyday lives.

    By collecting healthcare information both quickly and efficiently, in line with best practice guidelines for security of patient data, the system offers responsiveness to patient safety, high quality data and short timelines for studies. This digitally enhanced RCT design is a new and innovative approach to clinical trials; it is anticipated that the study methodology and underpinning technology could be used in future studies, not just in Greater Manchester but worldwide.

    Sir David Dalton, Salford Royal Foundation Trust, Chief Executive, said: “Salford has a rich history of pioneering health care and is now building one of the most innovative environments in the UK for conducting patient-focused health research and translating it into patient benefit. We are delighted that this ground-breaking study has taken place in Salford as a result of our close collaboration with NorthWest EHealth, GSK and Salford CCG. Together we are at the forefront of the development of healthcare focused on the needs of patients by providing modern, innovative and cost-effective care, embracing technologies, and ensuring that patients have the opportunity to take part in research. Our pioneering approach to integrated care and information systems has made this study possible.”

    Professor Martin Gibson, NorthWest EHealth. Chief Executive, said: “This is not about Big Data - this is about understanding the way patients interact with medications in their everyday lives. Our unique technology supports understanding of NHS data to bring the right drugs to market quicker, whilst providing timely and accurate information on safety and cost for payers and patients alike.”


  • 901 Purple Wavers complete the Great Manchester Run

    Students and staff were proud to be purple after finishing the Great Manchester Run, as part of the first ever University Purple Wave.

    The initial idea came from Mike Gibbons, Director of Student Recruitment and International Development, Kersti Borjars, Professor of Linguistics and Vicky Foster-Lloyd, Head and Sport and Active Lifestyles.

    Vicky put her SPORT Manchester team at the helm, in partnership with Students’ Union, to bring the concept to fruition with a target of 1000 runners generating £100k for Charity.

    The Students’ Union fundraising arm, Raise and Give team, had been working hard with all the runners to hit the  target. More than £59,512  has been raised at the latest count. If you want to donate visit our Just Giving page .

    The largest individual fundraiser is currently Steve Pettifer, raising nearly £1500 and the largest group fundraiser has been the University Women’s Hockey Club who have raised over £3500.

    SPORT Manchester aim to engage more people in sport and physical activity and are in their third year of being a successful Sport England University Activation Funded Institution.

    Of the purple wave, 901 race finishers, 409 of which were new to running.

    Member of staff Gary Rowlinson who finished in 35:04, just ahead of Dan Pettitt, student and Treasurer of the University X-Country Club with a time of 36:06, Anne Kenchington in 39:04 and Sinead Sweeney with 39:39. Anne and Sinead are also students and members of the University X-Country Club.

    General Secretary of the University of Manchester Students’ Union Naa Acquah said: “Getting people together to enjoy physical activity is not only great for student’s wellbeing but gives them the opportunity to try something new. This was my first time ever running and the 10K even gave me the push to try it. I may not have been the fastest runner but the sense of achievement of going out of your comfort zone is fantastic. It was a wonderful day and I can’t wait for next year, to get even more students and staff involved, especially those who like myself have never run before.

    Vicky Foster- Lloyd said: “To line up on the start line with over 1000 colleagues from across the University community, all in purple t-shirts is a memory that I will never forget. Many of the runners had never taken part in this kind of event before and with over 400 stating they were new to running. To know that we have inspired so many people to get active and raise money for worthy causes is so pleasing and demonstrates what a great place the University of Manchester is.”

  • NSPCC partnership event: Deaf children: are we keeping them safe?

    Research shows deaf and disabled children are three times more at risk of abuse than non-disabled children.

  • Children from 20 schools join forces to create musical robots

    Children from 20 schools across Greater Manchester have joined forces with engineers from Siemens, music experts from the Hallé Orchestra and academics from The University of Manchester to create musical robots for the University’s ‘robot orchestra’ project.

    The robot orchestra intends to explore how, through creating and performing, people can have fun and care for the environment. It aims to utilise the imagination and community spirit of Greater Manchester to create an ‘orchestra’ made up, in part, of recycled materials. Local people of all ages are being encouraged to get involved by salvaging and donating redundant technology, building the robots and the instruments, writing code, hosting maker events or sharing their musical expertise.

    The project was dreamed up by Engineer Professor Danielle George and citizen scientist Dr Erinma Ochu MBE, who are both based at The University of Manchester. Danielle worked with the Royal Institution to find existing robots and get them to perform the Doctor Who Theme at her 2014 Royal Institution Christmas lectures, and Erinma helped to design the Museum of Science and Industry’s globally successful citizen science initiatives.

    Almost 200 primary and secondary school children attended the event in the Great Hall at the University’s Sackville Street Building, where partner organisations such as Apple, The Hive, Noisy Toys and FabLab led workshops to build music-making robots. Around 20 robots were created, including a series of percussive devices such as a drum made from Pringle tubes, plus various tambourines and bells.

    Seven of these completed robots were tested and successfully linked with the central coordinating robot - named ‘Graphene’ because it’s a great conductor - which is being developed by Robot Orchestra partner Siemens. A representative from the company made a presentation to the youngsters about the orchestra and how they can help to create it. Steve Pickett, Education Director at the Hallé Orchestra, also revealed some of the exciting new composition being especially created by them for the robots, and explained how they will perform the score in concert.

    The children were also able to see an automated glockenspiel, and a hexapod robot ‘spider’ which played notes with its multiple feet.

    The orchestra will give its full debut performance in July, during the Euroscience Open Forum - Europe’s largest science conference. There are lots of ways to get involved - you could start recycling computer parts and old instruments to use to make a musical robot, attend a maker event, or put on your own event and get in touch to tell us about it. Going to an event is a great way to find collaborators who can help you - visit the website at or follow @robotsmcr on Twitter to find out more.

  • A science chaser for pub-goers: festival launches

    More than 30 scientists from The University of Manchester are to take part in the world's largest festival of public science on 23rd – 25th May

    Researchers from over 100 cities around the world taking part in the event which brings science out of the lab and into the local boozer.

    Founded four years ago by two UK researchers, the three-day Pint of Science festival today brings a unique line up of talks, demonstrations and live experiments to the world’s favourite watering holes.

    Now in its third year in Manchester, researchers can be caught speaking at five pubs across the city each night, and tickets are available for £4 from the Pint of Science website

    This year’s talks include a serious discussion on suicide, sneezes and wheezes and  the problems of feeding an ever growing world population . And for those who want to know a bit more about quantum physics - over a pint-  now’s your chance.

    Alongside the main talks, each evening will also include a range of fun, science related activities including live experiments, science comedy, fun quizzes, engaging stories and other interactive activities.

    Manchester organiser is Hannah Roberts, a final Year PhD student who is currently researching the viability of nuclear waste disposal.

    She said: “So much science communication is aimed at children and parents. While this is clearly important, we feel that adults too need to know more about what is going on in the lab.

    “So this is a brilliant way to bridging the gap, and informing the public so they will know more about what is going on in the lab. Sometimes it also helps to inform our guests about something which directly affects them.”

    One of the contributors is Dr Sheena Cruickshank, who’s talk is entitled: sneezes and wheezes: understanding allergies.

    She said: “Pint of Science is a fantastic event, lead by our students and showcasing a diverse series of science topics in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere. Come and have a pint and share some science.”

    Pint of Science was established four years ago by a group of UK based postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers. Festival founders Dr Praveen Paul and Dr Michael Motskin, who were based at Imperial College London are now aiming to get their volunteer run initiative in every city in the world.

    “We want to give people the opportunity to learn about the latest scientific developments directly from the scientists themselves – and then feel free to question them”, says Festival co-founder Dr Paul. “We were at first surprised by the public's appetite for these events and by the interest from both volunteer organisers and speakers. The rapid growth of Pint of Science from a grassroots effort to a global movement has shown that we may have been underestimating both scientists and the public, and that there is a greater need for more events like these”.

  • Unique audiology research van to improve the lives of infants with hearing problems

    Researchers from Manchester are taking to the road in a unique research van that will travel up and down the country, visiting the homes of infants with hearing problems.

  • ‘Stellar cannibalism’ transforms star into brown dwarf

    Astronomers have detected a sub-stellar object that used to be a star, after being consumed by its white dwarf companion.

    An international team including Dr. Rene Breton, a Marie Curie Fellow at The University of Manchester’s School of Physics & Astronomy, made the discovery by observing a very faint binary system 730 light years away. The system consists of a low-mass object – about 60 times the mass of Jupiter – in an extremely close 78-minute orbit around a white dwarf (the remnant of a star like our Sun).

    Due to their close proximity, the white dwarf strips mass from its low-mass companion. This process has removed about 90 per cent of the mass of the companion, turning it from a star into a brown dwarf. Most brown dwarfs are ‘failed stars’, objects that were born with too little mass to shine brightly by fusing hydrogen in their cores.

    The study used the X-Shooter instrument at the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Cerro Paranal, Chile, in order to directly detect and characterise a system that has survived such a traumatic transition.

    Lead author Juan Venancio Hernández Santisteban, a PhD student at the University of Southampton, said: “X-Shooter is a unique instrument that can observe astronomical objects simultaneously all the way from the ultraviolet to the infrared. This allowed us to dissect the light of this system and uncover the hidden signal from the faint brown dwarf.”

    The astronomers also used their data to map the surface temperature across the brown dwarf. This turns out to be non-uniform, since this cool sub-stellar object is strongly irradiated by its much hotter white dwarf companion. The map showed a clear temperature difference between the dayside (the side facing the white dwarf) and the nightside - on average, the difference amounts to 57 degrees Celsius, but the hottest and coldest parts of the brown dwarf’s surface differ by a full 200 degrees Celsius.

    Professor Christian Knigge, from the University of Southampton said: “The construction of this surface temperature map is a significant achievement. In many giant planets – the so-called “hot-Jupiters” – irradiation by the host star completely overwhelms the planet’s internal heat flux. By contrast, internal heat flux and external irradiation are comparable for the brown dwarf in our study. This represents an unexplored regime, making such systems valuable as laboratories for irradiated (sub-) stellar and planetary atmospheres.”

    The study involved astronomers from the universities of Keele, Manchester, Oxford, Sheffield, Southampton and Warwick (UK), the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain) and Hamburger Sternwarte (Germany). It was funded by the Royal Astronomical Society, European Union Eleventh Framework Programme, European Research Council, CONACyT (Mexico) and the University of Southampton.

  • Appointment of Sir Mark Elder as Honorary Professor

    The University of Manchester is delighted to appoint Sir Mark Elder CBE as an Honorary Professor.

    Sir Mark has been Music Director of the Hallé since September 2000 and works as a guest with the world’s leading opera houses and symphony orchestras. He has a wide-ranging discography of award-winning recordings and is International Chair in Conducting at the Royal Northern College of Music.

    Sir Mark Elder was knighted in 2008 and was awarded the CBE in 1989. He won an Olivier Award in 1991 for his outstanding work at the English National Opera and in May 2006 he was named Conductor of the Year by the Royal Philharmonic Society. He was awarded Honorary Membership of the Royal Philharmonic Society in 2011.

    Sir Mark will join the University from 1 September 2016 and will give his inaugural lecture at 3pm on Thursday 29 September at the University’s Martin Harris Centre for Music and Drama.

    Sir Mark commented, “It is a great honour to be asked to accept an Honorary Professorship in the Music Department of the University of Manchester. I shall be delighted to play a small role in developing future generations of professional musicians”

    Dr Camden Reeves, Head of Music, said "We are delighted to welcome Sir Mark as an Honorary Professor here at the University of Manchester. His work at the Hallé has made him a musical icon within the city of Manchester, and as such he will be a fantastic inspiration to our students and staff. We are looking forward to working with, and learning from, him in the years to come."

  • Dino jaws: Stegosaurs bite strength revealed

    The first detailed study of a Stegosaurus skull shows that it had a stronger bite than its small peg-shaped teeth suggested. The Natural History Museum’s Stegosaurus specimen, ‘Sophie’, has been compared with two plant-eating dinosaurs with similar skulls: Plateosaurus and Erlikosaurus.

    All three had a large low snout and a scissor-like jaw action that moved up and down. Using computer modelling a team of scientists from Bristol, London, Manchester and Birmingham, including Charlotte Brassey from The University of Manchester, has shown these dinosaurs had different biting abilities.

    As Prof Paul Barrett, dinosaur researcher at the Natural History Museum explains: “Far from being feeble, as usually thought, Stegosaurus actually had a bite force within the range of living herbivorous mammals, such as sheep and cows.”

    The finding means that scientists need to reconsider how Stegosaurus fitted into its ecological niche. For example it may have had a role in spreading the seeds of woody evergreen cycads.

    Stegosaurus lived around 150 million years ago and needed to eat a lot of plants to sustain its large size. As grasses did not exist then, it would have fed on plants such as ferns and horsetails.

    As Barrett, leader of the research team, comments: “Our key finding really surprised us: we expected that many of these dinosaur herbivores would have skulls that worked in broadly similar ways. Instead we found that even though the skulls were fairly similar to each other in overall shape, the way they worked during biting was substantially different in each case.”

    Lead author Dr Stephan Lautenschlager, a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Bristol’s School of Earth Sciences, employed digital models and computer simulations to analyse the dinosaurs’ bites, using data from 3D scans of the skulls and lower jaws. He used engineering software to give the skulls the material properties that would match as closely as possible to the real thing, for example, using data on crocodile teeth to model those of the dinosaurs.

    By attaching muscles to the models, he was able to examine the forces that the jaws could produce and the subsequent stresses on the skulls.

    As computer power increases and software becomes more available, Lautenschlager thinks that we will see more modelling used in dinosaur research: “Using computer modelling techniques, we were able to reconstruct muscle and bite forces very accurately for the different dinosaurs in our study. As a result, these methods give us new and detailed insights into dinosaur biology – something that would not have been possible several years ago.”

    Further images are available at note: images are for single use only to illustrate this press release and are not to be archived.All images © Stephan Lautenschlager

    Original PublicationLautenschlager, S., Brassey, C. A., Button, D. J., Barrett, P. M. Decoupled form and function in disparate herbivorous dinosaur clades. Sci. Rep. 6, 26495; doi:10.1038/srep26495 (2016)

    For further information, please contact the Natural History Museum Press Office Tel: +44 (0) 20 7942 5654 / +44 (0) 7799 690 151 Email:

    For interviews with Charlotte Brassey from The University of Manchester, contact: Mike Addelman, Media Relations Officer, Faculty of Life Sciences, University of Manchester,, 0161 275 2111, 07717 881567

  • Dental researchers get over £5 million to look into timing of infants' cleft palate surgery and speech development

    Researchers at Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CMFT) and The University of Manchester have been awarded more than £5 million to evaluate the timing of surgery for infants with cleft palate.

  • Graphene makes rubber more rubbery

    Adding graphene to thin rubber films can make them stronger and stretchier, University of Manchester researchers have shown.

  • Justine Greening leads debate on economic empowerment

    The Secretary of State for International Development, Justine Greening spoke about the economic empowerment of women at the Global Development Institute (GDI) today (19 May).

    Ms Greening led an expert panel from The University of Manchester, discussing how we can help women become economically empowered and the potential impact this could have around the world.

    The Secretary of State is a leading voice in the global quest for women’s equality and a founding member of the UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment.

    She was joined on the panel by Professor David Hulme, Executive Director of the Global Development Institute, and Professor Stephanie Barrientos, GDI’s Director of Social Responsibility.

    The event also gave Ms Greening the chance to engage with a diverse audience who were eager to take part, voice their opinions and share their experiences in relation to the empowerment debate.

    During the debate, the Secretary of State heard from young people about their own experiences of economic empowerment and any ideas for improvement they may have.

    As well as students and academics from the GDI, the audience was made up of around 60 delegates from organisations such as Women Worldwide, Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organising (WIEGO) and the Princes Trust International.

    The audience’s participation provided invaluable feedback for the Secretary of State to take back to UN panel and use it to ‘jump start’ the global movement on women’s economic empowerment.

    The aim of the UN panel is to deliver concrete steps to enable women to fully participate and contribute to local and national economies, boosting progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals.

    Professor Hulme said: “We were chosen to host the event due to the Global Development Institute’s outstanding reputation and work in the field of international gender equality and economic empowerment.

    “We’d like to thank the Secretary of State for asking the GDI to host the event and contribute to what is an immensely important debate, both in the UK and overseas. Economic equality and empowerment is one of the fundamental drivers of stability and inclusive growth for any nation’s economy. The expertise and ideas of researchers can deliver concrete steps to help achieve such goals.”

  • Billions of galaxies set to star in the ‘greatest movie ever made’

    The World’s first motion picture of our Universe - which is being dubbed the ‘greatest movie ever made’ - is to be produced by astronomers from across the world, including The University of Manchester. The film, which could feature dangerous asteroids and uncover some of the mysteries of dark matter and dark energy, will be recorded on the world’s largest digital camera.

    When it is completed, the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) will be able to take images of the sky that cover over 40 times the area of the moon, building up a survey of the entire visible sky in just three nights. That means billions of galaxies, stars and solar system objects will be seen for the first time, and monitored over ten years. UK astronomers will now play a key part after funding from the Science and Technology Facilities Council confirmed the UK’s participation.

    LSST will build up a very detailed map of billions of galaxies, with approximate distances to each, from which we will learn about the mysterious dark energy that seems to be accelerating the expansion of the Universe. But, equally, it will look for changes in the sky from night to night; both moving objects, like asteroids, and new ones, like supernovae, that appear where nothing had been seen before. Covering each patch of sky over 800 times during its decade of operations, it will construct the very first motion picture of the Universe.

    When it starts operating, it will generate one of the largest scientific datasets in the World. The LSST is a ‘synoptic’ survey because it will form an overall view of the Universe: billions of objects will be imaged in six colours, spanning a volume of the Universe that is larger than any previously explored.

    Steven Kahn, the LSST Director said: “I am delighted that STFC is supporting UK participation in LSST. It is great to see UK astronomers engaging in preparation for LSST, and we look forward to seeing our collaboration develop over the coming years. LSST will be one of the foremost astronomy projects in the next decades and the UK astronomical community will contribute strongly to its success. The telescope is being built in the Chilean Andes. Conditions there are some of the driest on Earth, making it the ideal position for observing.”

    The LSST will provide unprecedented access to data, allowing for new kinds of citizen science and discovery. Discoveries made by the LSST will also be used to construct educational materials that will be freely available to schools and the public.

    The telescope will achieve first light in 2020, and its main sky survey will begin in 2022. Like all good movie franchises, the LSST story will unfold in stages, from a preview in 2023 to a finale in 2033.