Into the fast lane: groundbreaking school racing track to inspire generation of engineers

Schools, Libraries and Learning
15:59, Friday, 10th May 2024

North Lincolnshire Council is supporting the investment of £40,000 to help build a racing track at Baysgarth School, helping to unleash the potential of a generation of young engineers.

Pupils at the Barton-upon-Humber school have been designing and building Greenpower electric kit cars since 2018, gaining hands-on science, maths and engineering skills, and helping the school to become a centre of excellence in the process.

The journey has seen Baysgarth put North Lincolnshire on the map, with pupils competing at iconic tracks like Silverstone, and securing apprenticeships at some of the region’s biggest employers, including Ineos and Croda.

They are now driving ahead and are seeking sponsors to build their very own racing track – believed to be the first of its kind built at a school.

Jade Driscoll, headteacher at Baysgarth School, said:

“We’ve cultivated a real passion for STEM and sustainable energy at Baysgarth, providing students with phenomenal experiences in the process. Greenpower is already well integrated into the curriculum with reverse engineering sessions and electronic, friction and speed training kits, but this STEM project will further enhance this.

“The purpose-built track will allow students the opportunity to experience real-life pit stop challenges and to go full throttle around the course, whilst also developing skills and knowledge suitable for the local labour market. Furthermore, the track will not only be available for students of Baysgarth, but to the wider local community for smaller group races and for F1 grand prix style events, and much more!

“Looking for £130,000 of investment has been no easy feat, however, through fundraising events held by students, the generous support of local organisations and the commitment and determination of the team, the majority of funding has been secured. We would like to extend a huge thank you to North Lincolnshire Council for their significant investment, along with VPI Immingham, Cemex, RWE, Barrow Rotary and ADJ Surfacing, without whom this would not be possible.”

The test track will pave the way for the development of a regional STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) centre at the school.

Cllr Rob Waltham, leader, North Lincolnshire Council, said:

“The council has worked really closely with Barton ward councillors: Keith Vickers, Paul Vickers and Christine Patterson, and the school, to support this project.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for our young people, enabling them to gain hands-on, cutting-edge experience in STEM subjects and bringing design and technology to life in the most engaging way.

“North Lincolnshire is at the forefront of the UK’s green energy revolution, and this is a great example of how we can align school curriculums to the needs of employers in these emerging industries, helping our young people secure high-skill, high-wage local jobs.”

Students and teachers pictured with a kart at Baysgarth School


As well as supercharging the skills of the area’s children, the track will also become an important resource for the wider community, providing an all-weather running track for local athletics groups, as well as a safe environment to undertake cycling proficiency training, and a raft of wellbeing activities.

Cllr Julie Reed, cabinet member for children, families and communities, said:

“The fact that this exciting project has already helped students secure apprenticeships with global science and chemical engineering companies is a brilliant testament, but we don’t want its impact to end there.

“This investment will help even more children and young people across North Lincolnshire to benefit from high quality, real-world experience in science, maths, technology and engineering, in fun, creative ways.

“I’m looking forward to seeing work drive ahead on the track.”

Any businesses keen to support the students in their green initiative can back the project on JustGiving, or by contacting the school.

Stay up to date with the project by following Baysgarth School on Facebook.

Pictured from left to right: Ben Wilson, head of design technology at Baysgarth School, Barton ward councillors Christine Patterson, Keith Vickers, and Paul Vickers, Cllr Rob Waltham, leader of North Lincolnshire Council, Oscar Bell, student at the school and Andrew Browne, STEM co-ordinator at the school. Student Tilly Jenkins Foster is at the wheel.