The One Show goes to the beach

3 km of electric cabling, 750 metres of bunting, 168 litres of quick sand, 12 bee stings and more than 10,000 guests - it could only be The One Show Summer Festival which parked up in Weston-super-Mare for two days last week.

Matt Baker and Alex Jones at the beach Spectators watch Matt Baker and Alex Jones in Weston-super-Mare

It's the second time that BBC Learning has teamed up with the flagship magazine show to put on a large scale event. The thinking behind it is to magnify the learning potential of the series by creating hands-on activity built around themes such as science, music and art, and fronted by The One Show's reporters and presenters.

We wanted it to feel like a real family fair so we also had teams of scientists helping families create instant ice cream (surprisingly tasty), banoffi pie made of sea weed (nicer than expected) and yes, the quicksand mentioned earlier...

The feedback was excellent with most attendees saying they'd learnt something new and crucially, that they'd been inspired to take that new-found knowledge even further.

It's been a busy summer for BBC Learning's event team. We've worked with colleagues in the Radio division to produce the Radio 1 Academy; we've created a CBeebies summer tour that has been seen by around 100,000 people and we enjoyed The One Show experience so much that we are doing it all again in Gateshead later in the month.

Collaboration isn't always easy. A lot of hard work goes into creating the infrastructure and content required for successful large scale events and sometimes in the flurry of broadcasts, that can be forgotten.

But the instant gratification we get from audiences delighted to see the BBC's biggest brands in their towns and the pure joy of seeing families getting a real hands-on learning experience thankfully makes it feel 100% worthwhile.


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