Ticket sales take off for Festival
Ticket sales for Grantham's Gravity Fields Festival have really taken off.
Ticket sales for Grantham's Gravity Fields Festival have really taken off with just a week to go to the opening event.
The Science Museum's Bubble Show on Saturday (September 22) has sold out and another event has been arranged to cope with the demand.
The Festival has been organised and funded by South Kesteven District Council, and Leader of the Council, Cllr Linda Neal, is delighted that local people are responding to the opportunity to celebrate the life and work of Grantham's most famous son, Sir Isaac Newton.
"The Festival features science and arts, but most of all it is fun. We believe there is something for everyone and the transformation of the town next Friday night (September 28) will see processions through Grantham town centre, fire pendulums in the Market Place, a light projection on St Wulfram's church spire and an amazing aerial event using a crane on St Peter's Hill by Cirque Bijou who were involved in the opening ceremony for London 2012 Olympics. The Friday night event is completely free and I don't think Grantham will have ever seen anything like it.
"Shops have agreed to stay open late, we've got local high quality food stalls, and fairground rides will demonstrate 3G and Newton's famous law of gravity. I'm sure it's going to be a really great evening," said Cllr Neal.
Tickets for the keynote science speeches are also almost sold out. The opening talk is by Grantham born and educated Valerie Gibson, now Professor of High Energy Physics at Cambridge University, and UK spokesperson for the European Centre for Nuclear Research.
Her subject is The High Energy Frontier: The Large Hadron Collider and she will also bring news and discoveries from CERN, the world's biggest experiment which aims to understand the most fundamental particles and forces of nature.
The talk by Professor Martin Rees on Saturday (September 22) is also selling well. The Astronomer Royal and former President of the Royal Society will describe the cosmos revealed by modern astronomy in Planets, Stars and the Universe.
Portfolio holder for Grow the Economy - Economic Development Cllr Frances Cartwright, added: "Tickets for the family shows are going quickly although we are still keen for primary and secondary schools to book our Keystage 2 and Keystage 3 experiences now they are back from their summer holiday.
"The events are really exciting and cost just £2 a student. They involve the Science Museum from London, the National Space Centre, Woolsthorpe Manor and our very own Apothecary and Alchemy Laboratory in the centre of Grantham."
Surprisingly, there is still availability for some of the drama shows including Circle of Eleven, whose LEO show defies the laws of gravity, has won three Fringe First Awards at Edinburgh and received rave reviews in New York.
As well as providing top quality events for local people, one of the aims of the Festival was to really put Grantham on the map for investors and potential visitors to the area.
Cllr Cartwright added: "We've certainly achieved that with coverage in the Independent newspaper, The Times science magazine, radio stations throughout the region and the Daily Mirror and the Guardian have all agreed to feature us in the run up to the opening day.
"Added to this we have had massive website coverage including on parentdish.co.uk where our event features at number eight in their top 20 places for families to visit in the UK during September and we were also included in the Visit England newsletter which has a distribution list of half a million.
"We haven't forgotten social media either. On Twitter we have 3,500 followers and they rate us as one of the top scientific destinations.
"All of this activity has cost us nothing and has our postcode analysis shows we are receiving bookings from as far afield as London, Bristol, the North East and the North West. We really are getting responses from all over the country," said Cllr Cartwright.
The Council has core-funded the event for £75,000 for two years and the Festival has also won support from the Arts Council in the form of a grant of £65,000. Cummins Generator Technologies in Stamford have not only provided sponsorship but also are also organising their own science careers days for sixth form students.
BBC Outreach are also partnering on an audio drama project with BBC Lincolnshire and the University of Lincoln which involves community performers in a professionally led production.
Sponsorship support has also come from the Roseland Group, the Angel and Royal, the George Centre, Ramada hotel, the Priory Business Venue, Viking Signs and Harlaxton Manor.
Other partners include the National Portrait Gallery and the National Trust at both Belton House and Woolsthorpe Manor.
The Council is also grateful for venue support from St Wulfram's Church, Christ Church, Finkin Street, the Baptist Church, Grantham Museum, Kesteven and Grantham Girls' School, the Masonic Hall, the King's School, Grantham College, the Woodland Trust, Walton Girls' School and Woolsthorpe Manor.
To book events and avoid disappointment before they sell out visit www.gravityfields.co.uk or telephone (01476) 406158