Romford school’s model train sounds the whistle for budding young engineers

Pupils from Frances Bardsley Academy For Girls with the help of Romford Model Engineering Club have

Pupils from Frances Bardsley Academy For Girls with the help of Romford Model Engineering Club have successfully built a 250 ft train track to encourage engineering - Credit: Rachel Grimwood

Pupils have been set on the track to a future in engineering thanks to a pioneering new venture.

A model train track has been crafted and installed by pupils in the grounds of Frances Bardsley Academy for Girls, Brentwood Road, Romford.

The project was designed to combat shocking figures that show only five per cent of women go into the sector.

The school’s ethos development manager, Rachel Grimwood said: “Our founder, Frances Bardsley, wanted girls to achieve great things and to be able to enjoy many opportunities both academic and personal.

“Our ethos allows students to develop new skills and face new challenges apart from just the academic curriculum.”

With the help of Romford Model Engineering Club the school’s students have installed a 250 foot track, each section of which is inscribed with the name of the pupil who made it.

Pupil Daisy Tomlison said: “It’s an introduction to the engineering world and gets more girls into engineering because there aren’t many women in the sector.

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“I have learned to weld, use a pillar drill and a tap and die to create bolts to hold the train tracks in place, giving me good skills to use later on.”

Pupils will construct an engine and carriages in the Autumn and a turntable early next year.

School trips will also be taken to the Dunton Technical Centre in Essex, owned by the Ford Motor Company, and the Museum of Power in Langford.

Ms Grimwood continued: “It is a way to prove that women are capable of making a career in the engineering world that doesn’t simply involve office work, but hands-on manual working on the project.”

The school is hoping to raise funds to purchase the engine, to donate, contact the school on 01708 447368.