Last week, Sir Peter Ogden was back on his old stomping ground as he officially opened the latest Phiz Lab at Lowerplace Primary School, Rochdale. Sir Peter along with his son and current chair of the Trust, Cameron, were special guests at the school for the afternoon. They were treated to a science-themed lunch and a tour of the school before helping the children conduct scientific experiments in the new, dedicated physics lab, finishing with the grand opening.
When speaking about his return to Rochdale, Sir Peter said: “It's exciting to be back at my old primary school. I’ve a lot of happy memories of Lowerplace so I am particularly proud to be opening this Phiz Lab.
“Phiz Labs are a great opportunity to get children involved at an early age in the wonders of science and I am pleased to welcome teachers and students from our local cluster of schools who are promoting science education in our primary schools so successfully.
“Science is part of our everyday lives and we have a responsibility to ensure our children can understand its basics, its applications and above all, its beauty. From simple questions like how does a mobile phone work to more complex investigations on how did the universe come into being – these are all things children should think about. This Phiz Lab will hopefully be the first step on that learning journey for these young children.”
Rochdale Councillor Kieran Heakin, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, was another of the guests at the Phiz Lab opening: “This is a wonderful resource for our primary schools. It is great to see our young people interested and passionate about science, it’s a great career path for them and I hope Sir Peter’s visit, and the Phiz Lab, will inspire them.”
Garry Johnson, the Headteacher at Lowerplace Primary School, was also delighted with Sir Peter’s visit and the new lab: “We are thrilled to have this fantastic facility here. To have Sir Peter come back to his former primary school was very special. This has been a very memorable day and I’d like to thank Sir Peter for spending so much time with our children, I’m sure he’s inspired many of them.”
Sir Peter attended Lowerplace Primary School in the 1950s, where he met his wife. He later went on to attend Rochdale Grammar School where he won a scholarship for Durham University, he graduated with a BSc in physics and a PhD in particle physics before going on to complete an MBA at Harvard Business School. Sir Peter went on to become a co-founder of Computacenter and in 2005, he was knighted for services to education with The Ogden Trust.