A BROTHER and sister from Cumnock have been learning all about technology during the school holidays.

Callum Holmes, aged 11, and eight-year-old Emily, pupils at Greenmill Primary School, attended an engineering open day at Dumfries House.

Their mum, Lynne Holmes, took them along where they were joined by children and their parents who had travelled from near and far to the event.

It was staged in association with The Institution of Engineering and Technology, and conducted by Dumfries House staff with representatives of industry partners.

Lynne, 48, said: "As a parent helper with the school, I’ve been to Dumfries House previously and it’s fabulous. Callum and Emily both like science and engineering work in class, so I thought we’d come along and have fun. They’ve enjoyed taking part in the activities, and it’s good for them to realise where engineering can be important.”

Among the various activities Callum and Emily took part in was a paper aeroplane experiment with Kyle Welsh, originally from Kilmarnock.

Kyle was there as STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) ambassador for his employers, global engineering company Leonardo.

He said: "The kids are learning the basics of engineering, construction, aerodynamics, precision and flight. They begin these tasks with an open mind and it’s fantastic to see.

"In partnership with Dumfries House, we are inspiring children to adopt a new outlook and trying to encourage them to consider engineering when they select subjects at school and make career choices."

Held at the Morphy Richards Engineering Centre, this was the second of what is now an annual event for youngsters, based on STEM themes, at Dumfries House.

They are being encouraged to study STEM subjects at school and, eventually, to help plug a skills gap by considering careers in related industry.

Dr Karen Alexander, head of education at Dumfries House, said: "We were delighted to welcome our industry partners and hundred of guests to the estate to learn more about engineering and technology in a fun environment.

"This is our way of playing a small part in encouraging school pupils to learn more about the skills and jobs in these subjects and meet the national target of finding two million new engineers in the next 10 years."

E-mail EducationAdmin@dumfries-house.org.uk to arrange school visits to Dumfries House.