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Cheltenham Science Festival celebrates its 20th birthday

Cheltenham Science Festival opens tomorrow (Tuesday, June 7) and is back at full scale to celebrate its 20th birthday.

In year two of the Festival's 'Be The Change' theme, four guest curators and a group of five young changemakers will show how science is shaping our future.

The guest curators are Deborah James, Alom Shaha, Daze Aghaji and Polly Denny. The festival will also feature Jim Al-Khalili, Evie Meg, Claudia Hammond, Mark Miodownik, Helen Czerski, Marty Jopson, Stefan Gates, Camilla Pang, Jonathon Porritt, Bryony Gordon, GCHQ, Vagina Museum, Marcus du Sautoy and Highly Sprung Performance

Over 130 ticketed events include Deborah James asking can we cure cancer in our lifetime? Jeff Forshaw considering if we are all holograms, and Jim Al-Khalili questioning if we are any closer to solving the mystery of time.

Topics to be explored cover art and design, social sciences, psychology and neuroscience, chemistry, engineering, entertainment, the environment, history, current affairs, technology, food, sport, space and the universe.

There are hundreds more free activities in several interactive spaces on site. The Arcade is a brand-new zone, full of fun, creative and cryptic challenges. VOICEBOX will have a series of free digital events on Instagram and TikTok covering today's hottest topics, from neurodiversity and video game design to body image and sustainable fashion, life hacks and collaborative artworks.

Making a welcome return are the popular Discover Zone and MakerShack, while the Apollo stage has free events and workshops for all ages. Also on site are the GE Pavilion, Hartpury Science Hub, The Woodland Trust and a free Science Trail.

Thousands of schoolchildren will be welcomed back to the Festival village to enjoy shows, get hands-on in class-sized workshops, take on challenges in the interactive zones, learn about careers in STEM and quiz scientists on their cutting edge-research.

Taking the Science Festival onto Cheltenham High Street for one day only, Highly Sprung's CastAway is a gravity-defying outdoor performance (Saturday 11 June) that explores the impact of today's throwaway society on our waterways.

The festival runs until Sunday, June 12 and for more information, visit www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/science 

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