October 14, 2008


Friday October 17, 2008 Richard Garriott, W5KWQ presently onboard the International Space Station, is planning to contact participants at Budbrooke school in Warwick, UK. The event is scheduled to begin at approximately 11:06 UTC, which is 12:06 UK Time and 13:06 Central European Time (CET). The signals from space should be audible all over Western Europe on 145,800MHz FM.

Radio contact coordinator will be Ciaran Morgan M0XTD who provided this  presentation.


According to tradition, Warwick was founded on the banks of the River Avon in the year 914 AD, when Ethelfleda, sister of the Mercian king Edward the Elder built defences against Danish (Viking) invaders; these were to be the basis of Warwick Castle, a famous landmark that still exists to this day and was mentioned in the Doomsday Book that was compiled by William the Conqueror shortly after the Norman Conquest of 1066AD.


The name 'Warwick' means "dwellings by the weir”.


Budbrooke Primary School is situated 2 miles to the west of Warwick in the centre of England in a village called Hampton Magna which itself is associated with history.  Hampton Magna is sited on the land that used to belong to the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, the regiment the Field Marshall Montgomery commanded during World War II. 


Currently this popular state school educates approximately 270 pupils between the ages of 4 and 11 and is split into an infant school (ages 4-7) and a Junior School (ages 8-11).  The school is based in the middle of a very close community and both the School and the Community are very involved with each other.  Several after school activities are lead by or involve the parents of the children at the school and this includes the Budbrooke School Imagineering Club.  The Imagineering Club is run by practicing engineers from industry who donate their time to helping children experience science and engineering through fun, practical and hands on activities.


The School’s history dates back to 1863 but, in 2008, it is celebrating being on its current site for 40 years.  It is also 40 years since the first manned Apollo spacecraft circled the moon.  Budbrooke School wanted to mark the 40th Anniversary in a dramatic and memorable way. To do this, Budbrooke, along with its Imagineering Club (whose lead tutor is a Radio Amateur), applied to ARISS to be allowed to talk directly to astronauts and cosmonauts on the International Space Station.  The children spent time studying the way in which the world has changed and how space travel has had such an influence on the last 40 years.  Some of their work can be seen at http://www.budbrooke.warwickshire.sch.uk/fortycelebration.php .


This incredible opportunity will be realised on 17th October 2008 when Richard Garriott, the first British born space flight participant will talk directly to the children at Budbrooke School.  The children will ask as many of the following questions as time permits:-


1. Sunrise and Sunset can be amazing sights on earth - what do they look like from space?
2. Is it hot in space?
3. What do you do with all your rubbish in space - do you recycle and if so how?
4. What is your favourite thing to do on the space station?
5. How can you do exercise in space to keep fit?
6. Why is there zero gravity in space?
7. Can plants grow on the space station - if so what is growing at the moment?
8. Is it harder to concentrate in space than on Earth?
9. What is the most dangerous job on the space station and why?
10. Do you ever feel dizzy in space?
11. How did it feel when the rocket lifted off the ground?
12. What do the stars look like when you're in space?
13. What do you do for entertainment on the space station?
14. From the space station, can you see the moon rise and set just like we see it on earth?
15. What do you miss the most about home whilst you are in space?
16. Who would treat you if you were ill in space?
17. What is the largest number of people allowed on one trip to the Space Station?
18. I have always wanted to be an astronaut. What do I need to do to become one?
19. Our school is 40 years old this year. Do you think there will still be a space station in another 40 years?
20. Can you take a picture of
Budbrooke School as you pass overhead and bring it to our school?

The whole contact is being videoed by the British Amateur Television Club (BATC) and will be streamed live onto the BATC internet site at http://www.batc.tv under the "Live Events".



Gaston Bertels, ON4WF

ARISS-Eureope chairman