THOUSANDS of children, parents and business leaders gathered to take part in the biggest ever UlverSTEM event.

Children of all ages descended upon the Coro Hall and the Laurel and Hardy Museum this weekend to learn all about Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects.

A host of local major employers were on hand to spark young people’s interest in the STEM industry, including: Siemens, GSK, Oxleys, and BAE Systems.

Jane Moorby, marketing manager for Oxleys and an UlverSTEM committee member, said: “It’s really critical to engage young people in STEM subjects at a young age. We want to show young people that there are so many career opportunities in the STEM industry close to home."

Some of the experiments on offer were night vision goggles, a smoothie-mixing bike, hair-rising static electricity, potion-making, analysing biometrics and much more.

Mike Jeschke, UlverSTEM chairman and planning and materials expert at Siemens, said: “All the kids had a fantastic time whilst engaging in learning through experiments.

“It’s so important for schools to provide young people with the opportunities to attend events like these which really trigger kids’ interest in STEM subjects.”

Mr Jeschke hopes events like UlverSTEM bridges the gap between men and women working in STEM industries.

“Only 12 per cent of apprenticeships are made up of women, we really need that number pushed up,” he said.

Matilda, 11, had 'lots of fun' using the static bike to make smoothies.

She said: "It's really fun to see how the bike can mix the smoothie.

"We came last year and had lots of fun.

"I definitely want to come back next year."

Phoebe, 10, learnt CPR on a dummy.

She said: "I learnt all about CPR which was really interesting as I'd never done it before.

"It was fun to actually practice on the dummy for myself.

"It's the first time we've been and we're having a great time."

Jessica, 7, came along with her three-year-old sister, Charlotte.

She said: "We've had a lot of fun doing different experiments.

"I enjoyed doing the radiography experiment the most.

"It's fun to try new things for myself."

Lucas, 6, said he had a 'brilliant' time testing out different materials.

He said: "I did an experiment testing how dry my hands are after dropping a ball into a hole.

"It was really fun.

"I definitely want to come next year."