CityFibre has sponsored a game design workshop at Huddersfield Library, led by Ocean Spark Studios, to inspire and nurture new talent as part of British Science Week.
Young people across Huddersfield had the chance to learn about the world of coding and game design at two free workshops over British Science Week, thanks to a collaboration between Ocean Spark Studios, Kirklees Library and CityFibre, with the aim to boost technology skills and digital inclusion across the community.
Delivered by award-winning game developers, Ocean Spark Studios, around 30 budding game designers participated in the event, giving them first-hand experience of the skills required to succeed in the digital economy of today and tomorrow.
Ocean Spark Studios used the funding to purchase new equipment for its Academy, enabling them to offer workshops and extra-curricular activities to even more local children and try out new technologies such as virtual reality.
The session was hosted at Huddersfield Library, who as part of their wellbeing agenda offer a full and varied programme of events and activities to increase both the digital literacy and digital skills to all ages across Kirklees. The library is also connected to Kirklees Council’s gigabit-capable full fibre network, which was built by CityFibre in 2016. In just two workshops, the children were able to learn how to use industry-standard game development software to create their own game, while trying out immersive gaming through virtual reality headsets.
Speaking of the event, Stephen Moore, Huddersfield City Development Manager for CityFibre, said: “We’re really pleased to be supporting this event and helping young people learn the skills they need to succeed in a digital world.
“The digital economy is booming, and ultimately, this is where many of the jobs of tomorrow will be found. And what better way to get a head start than by working with the industry’s best, and using the digital infrastructure of tomorrow. Our Chancellor has called for full fibre as standard by 2033 – when many of today’s school children will have entered the workforce, potentially in roles that don’t even exist yet.
“It is vital, therefore, that we nurture talent, opportunity and digital potential.”
Helen Andrzejowska, Director, Ocean Spark Studios added: “We love being able to inspire the younger generation in our region to begin their journey into game development and free to attend workshops, such as this event during British Science Week.
“The biggest obstacle we face is being able to provide the latest industry technology and software at these workshops but thanks to CityFibre we were able to offer attendees incredible experiences on VR and access to the software used within the gaming industry. It was fantastic to see children of all ages learning some of skills needed to create games and we are thrilled that they had such a fun time using the Virtual Reality kits. Thank you to the team at CityFibre for the support and generosity!”
CityFibre has been supporting Huddersfield’s digital transformation since 2014, when it launched a new, independent 52km communications network providing full fibre connectivity to 176 public sector sites and the town’s business population.
It is now working in partnership with Vodafone, to extend its existing full fibre network past almost every home and business locally, enabling both residents and businesses to enjoy unlimited bandwidth and internet speeds of up to 1000Mbps.
By using fibre optic cables for every stage of the connection from the customer’s business or home to the internet, rather than aging, capacity-constrained copper cables, users can experience a significantly superior and more reliable broadband service, capable of Gigabit speeds (1000Mbps). This project is set to benefit the local business community as well as home users, by helping them become more efficient, adopt the latest technologies, and take their products or services to an international audience.
Representing a private investment worth £30m, the project is due to be completed by 2021, while the first connected homes can expect to be enjoying Gigafast broadband services from Vodafone by summer this year.
You can find out more about CityFibre’s Gigabit City vision for Huddersfield by visiting: cityfibre.com/huddersfield and following @GigabitHudds on Twitter.
For more information about Ocean Spark Studios and their academy, visit: oceansparkstudios.co.uk/academy