News story

Rubbish Challenge

Teams of children will be taking part in a rubbish challenge at Magna Science Adventure Centre when a new project is launched on 29th October.

“It’s a Rubbish Adventure” lifts the lid on the tonne of rubbish each household throws away every year, to find out what it contains and what happens to it next.  Pupils will be challenged to look through a black bin bag and reclaim all the useful stuff.

The visitor attraction has joined forces with Barnsley, Doncaster and Rotherham (BDR) Waste partnership and Shanks Waste Management who are building a new facility at Manvers in Rotherham to process the leftover household waste rather than send it to landfill.

Workshops aimed at Key Stage Two pupils will give them the opportunity to use conveyor belts, air blowers and electromagnets to separate the waste and look at how it can be turned into something useful.

Magna’s education manager, Stuart Ballard, said:  “The workshops will show the processes involved in moving, sorting, re-using and recycling the waste, just as it will be done at the new waste treatment facility at Manvers.”

Engineers from Shanks will be working with Magna to deliver the workshops. Shanks contracts director, Colin Fletcher, said:  “This is really all about getting children interested in recycling and excited about engineering, encouraging them to think about it as a career choice.”

BDR manager, Beth Clarke, said:  “The new facility will revolutionise the disposal of household waste in the area, increasing recycling, reducing the amount sent to landfill, making energy from waste and creating new jobs. It’s great to have this opportunity to team up with Magna to involve children in what we are trying to achieve.”

The hands-on sessions for seven to 11-year-olds are supported by a grant of £28,000 from The Royal Academy of Engineering, as part of a public education scheme aimed at encouraging budding engineers of the future.

As well as workshops at Magna, there will be outreach sessions in local schools.

PHOTOCALL:   Photographers and reporters are invited to the launch of “It’s a Rubbish Adventure” at Magna on Wednesday, 29th October at 11.15am.  Children armed with a black bin bag full of assorted rubbish will be challenged to sort out what’s recyclable and what’s not. A custom built conveyor belt and electro magnets to catch any metals will add to the hands-on workshop fun.

Interviews can be arranged for broadcast media.


The new waste treatment facility at Manvers is being built by 3SE, a partnership of Shanks Group and SSE, on behalf of the BDR Waste Partnership.  It will include mechanical biological treatment and anaerobic digestion facilities and will open in 2015.

Magna is based in the former Templeborough steelworks near the M1.  It offers hundreds of educational workshops to thousands of school children every year on a variety of scientific topics, many of them allied to the National Curriculum.

For more information about Magna and the Rubbish Adventure workshops go to or contact Stuart Ballard on 01709 723117 or 07825 616249.

For more information about BDR Waste Partnership and the new waste treatment facility, go to

Additional media contacts:  Eileen Brooks on 07944 839904 or at

Carmel O’Toole on 07838 368813 or at

Kate Betts on 07927 64891 or at