Over 325 GCSE pupils from ten different local schools came
to this year’s King Edward’s Geography Conference, which was held before half term.
The title of this year’s conference was ‘Disaster!’ and its
theme was looking at the human impact of environmental disasters. The keynote
speaker was Professor Bill McGuire, who opened the conference with a talk
entitled: ‘Waking the Giant: how a changing climate triggers earthquakes,
tsunamis and volcanoes’, following the name as his latest book on climate
change. Professor McGuire is a well know academic in the science of climate
change and has appeared in many radio and TV programmes and a consultant for
the lauded BBC Horizon films, Supervolcanoes and Megatsunami – Wave of
Destruction. It was a fascinating talk
and one that will live long in the memory for those geography students in
There were 8 other speakers at the Conference, including
Clive Jones MBE, who is the Chair of the UK’s Disasters Emergency Committee, which
co-ordinates fund raising efforts for major disasters.
What made the conference particularly interesting was the
variety of topics covered, including a talk by Old Witleian, Will Crawford, who
took his audience through the story of how he set up his own engineering
business which developed ‘Concrete Canvas’. The innovation enables concrete
buildings to be put up in a very short space of time in disaster and war-zones,
providing a safe, sanitised space.
Other speakers included John Preston, who spoke about the
role of social media in reporting disasters and Varyl Thorndycraft, who spoke
about how floods can dramatically change the landscape we live in.
The conference ran all day and there was a lot of
information to take in, but pupils were excellent, asking some intelligent
questions during what would have been an extremely helpful day’s learning for
their GCSE Geography.
information contact Matthew Willis on 01428 686720 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editor:
King Edward’s School
Edward’s School in Witley, Surrey, is an independent co-educational boarding
and day school for boys and girls from ages 11 to 18. The School was founded in
1553 to provide housing and education for destitute children in London. To this
day the School still provides bursary support and boarding accommodation for
around a quarter of its students and high levels of pastoral care are at the
heart of its ethos. However, the School has moved on to become one of the top
independent schools in the country, with a reputation for excellence in many
areas, including its International Baccalaureate 6th Form curriculum.