Category: Get Involved!


Here you will find information on the events, workshops, public meetings and presentations we are organising or involved with. You can also follow us on  Twitter.

Forthcoming events

Cambridge Science Festival 2020

The Science Festival next year is taking place 9-22 March 2020.

Previous events

Diet Disco! How long does it take to burn off a bar of chocolate?


March 2019 saw the return of Cambridge Science Festival. After the success of the science detectives in 2018; this year, our contribution to the festival was via an interactive “Diet Disco”

Visitor’s (predominantly school age children) heart rate was measured using a pulse oximeter on their finger, before and after dancing for 2 minutes. Each person had their choice of 1 out of 10 different songs. We then converted into their personal energy expenditure readouts.

Advice was then given on how much dancing would be required to burn off different types of food. Therefore making the connection between energy expenditure and what they ate.

We had displays that detailed how long you would have to dance for to burn off the energy in different food groups and some alcoholic drinks for the over 18s.

2750 members of the public attended this years’ festival, we shared information about our metabolic studies [CRF149 and CRF400], and 29 contacted us afterwards for information on studies to take part in.

We can conclude that:

  • Baby Shark was the most popular tune selected!
  • People’s heart-rates jumped most dramatically for Gangnam Style, with an average heart rate increase of 58 beats per minute!
  • You need to dance for about 45 minutes to burn off the energy in a Mars Bar.

 Is there truth in health stories? Become a health detective at the Science Festival 

Does an apple a day keep the doctor away or do you believe having a healthy body means having a healthy mind? How do we know that these health stories say what they mean or are they old wives tales? Cambridge researchers were able to help sort the truth from the myths.

The Cambridge Clinical Research Centre (CCRC) gave people the chance to become detectives, and investigate whether published health headlines are the real-deal or were some of them fake news.

Staff from the CCRC team, based on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, were at the Guildhall in March 2018, as part of the festivities for the Cambridge Science Festival.

Their stall offered people the chance to inspect real news headlines to investigate if there was any truth in news stories by looking at the scientific evidence. It gave people the chance to sort out the real science from the many myths that have been created and an insight what researchers have to do when they are faced with important health questions that need solving.

The public were able to meet researchers and nurses from the CCRC and staff were able to talk about clinical trials.

The day gave people the opportunity to meet researchers and nurses from the CCRC who work on research studies to find new medicines and treatments. People were able to ask questions about clinical trials and how they can get involved.


Young people in research programme launches

Twenty sixth-formers (from six local colleges) joined in October and have enjoyed a tour of the CRF with research sister Caroline McMahon as she gave an overview and tour of the facility.




International Clinical Trials Day 2017

Staff from the CRF were at the Outpatient’s Department providing the public with a range of information about clinical trials and getting involved in research.




 Children’s board: We are listening event 2016

As part of the Children’s Board, children were asked to develop their own social media strategy to help promote studies and engage the public



East of England Public Involvement Forum – 30 September 2015

Screen Shot 2015-09-30 at 14.51.55The event was aimed at PPI representatives and organisations that involve patients and members of the public in their work.  The workshops covered a wide range of topics.






The Children’s Board ‘Have your say’ event – 19 September 2015

This ‘ideas’ day was a chance for children and young people to tell researchers how to improve they way they communicate with young people and how to design research studies that will appeal to them. It took place in Cambridge on Saturday 19 September from 10am to 3.30pm, and was open to children and young people aged 8 to 16 years old. For further information contact Justine Hill


‘Find your voice: demystifying research and public involvement in research’ – 18 May, 2 June, 16 June, 26 June, 13 July 2015

find your voice Patients, carers or member of the public who wanted to find out more about key aspects of research took part in a series of five workshops which provided a fantastic opportunity to do just that. These free events took place in Cambridge during May, June and July this year and the workshops helped members of the public and representatives of patients’ groups to get to grips with some of the most important aspects of research.




International Clinical Trials Day

On 20 May 2015, staff from the Clinical Research Facility promoted their research and the ‘OK to Ask’ campaign on International Clinical Trials Day. Members of the public were told about opportunities to participate in the latest clinical studies and about how to get involved in shaping the research of the future. International Clinical Trials Day is celebrated around the world and commemorates the day James Lind started his famous trial on scurvy.





 Patient and Public Involvement Masterclass

On 14  May, the Clinical Research Facility joined forces with the Research Design Service for the East of England to run a ‘masterclass’ in patient and public involvement for researchers.






Cambridge Science Festival

Nearly 200 members of the public were recruited to a ‘chocolate trial’ as part of the Cambridge Science Festival on Saturday 14 March 2015.

The mock trial was run by Faye Forsyth (Research Nurse) and Justine Hill (PPI Lead) at the NIHR / Wellcome Trust Cambridge Clinical Research Facility (CRF).  The public were given a piece of chocolate (either plain or orange) and asked to compare its taste to their usual chocolate.  The idea was to give people an insight into what it is like to take part in a clinical trial.

For those who wanted to know more about a real CRF trial, Laura Watson (CRF Metabolic Physiologist) was on hand with a stall promoting the ’Fat, Fitness and Metabolism’ study.


The Clinical Research Facility Goes Dementia-Friendly

Staff and researchers at the NIHR Wellcome Trust Cambridge Clinical Research Facility (CRF) undertook to become Dementia Friends at the unit’s away-day at the end of January 2015. Dementia Friends is a national initiative run by the Alzheimer’s Society and funded by the Government – it aims to maximise the awareness and understanding of dementia and help those with the condition live well for longer.

Dementia Friends Champion, Graeme Whippy delivered an insightful training session at the away-day.   At the end of the session, CRF staff made the commitment to wear a Dementia Friends badge and build a dementia-friendly unit.