SCIENCE enthusiasts of all ages flocked to an interactive festival at a Dorchester school.

More than one thousand visitors headed to the Thomas Hardye School on Saturday afternoon to enjoy the fun and informative Family Science Festival, hosted by the Dorchester Area School's Partnership.

A total of 20 laboratories held demonstrations and attractions designed to introduce youngsters to the weird, wonderful, and entertaining world of science in celebration of National Biology Week and Earth Science Week.

A number of scientists from external organisations and guest presenters from Dorset engineering companies, wildlife organisations and universities lent their time throughout the day.

Judith Wardlaw, industry partnership development manager for the school, said: "The aim is really to give young children the experience of real science in action. We have a number of organisations, who provide us with outreach work throughout the year, as well as teachers voluntarily giving there time.

"It is a celebration for all ages to enjoy and take part in as an introduction to science."

Children and parents alike tried their hand at radio teddy bear tracking, drone flying and model boat making as they moved between classrooms.

They also got to savour a taste of 'brain jelly', dig for fossils, get up close to tarantulas and discover living organisms beneath the microscope.

Nine-year-old William Christian, from Dorchester, said: "We came today because we thought it would be a fun day out and it has been. We have visited the space dome and have seen how small different planets are next to the sun."

A series of theatre shows included the Triassic World with an animated introduction the the coastline, a live rocket show, and the Close Encounters animal display.

Parent Gabi Beauchamp, who bought along her four-year old son, said: "It's very busy and exactly what I expected. I think its is interesting and it is a nice introduction to science for all age groups."

Outside, Dorset emergency services were on hand to discuss road safety and demonstrate resuscitation on life-like models.

James Ryan, lead education paramedic for South Western Ambulance Service, said: "We have been demonstrating some of our latest state of the art training kit to teach children how to deliver CPR. It is an introduction to our equipment and our services and will hopefully teach the children some valuable life skills they can take home."

Sponsored by the school and the Dorchester Area Schools Partnership, the festival was free for all who attended with any donations were given to Weldmar Hospicecare Trust.