Fest No 4!

BUDLEIGH Salterton is to become a centre of culture with the announcement the town is to host a science festival, writes Becca Gliddon.

BUDLEIGH Salterton is to become a 'centre of culture' with the announcement the town is to host a science festival, writes Becca Gliddon.

The latest event makes a total of four annual festivals held in the town - following hot on the heels of the music and the arts and jazz festivals - and the most recent success, the literary festival.

Chairman Roger Bowen said the latest addition would put Budleigh on the map as a culture centre.

And it would attract a host of new visitors who would boost the economy.

Mr Bowen said he hoped the science festival would spark people's enthusiasm and thirst for knowledge relating to a number of political and cultural issues affecting the world.

He said: "You can get any information by reading the newspaper or watching the news, but there's nothing like hearing from the experts and having the opportunity to question them, instead of shouting at the TV where nobody can hear.

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"Instead, you can ask the question direct and weigh up the evidence.

"It's getting people to see the cultural advantage and it will make Budleigh Salterton stand out in the South West."

The Science Festival launches in 2010 and will be held on February 5 and 6, in the Public Hall, from 10am until 4.30pm.

Four sessions are planned, morning and afternoon. While it is too early to release a programme of events, keynote speakers and a panel of experts are expected.

Festival organisers plan to include a number of subjects guaranteed to provoke lively debates.

Jurassic Coast oceanography, coastline flooding, the implications of global warming and stem cell research are just a few ideas being floated by organisers.

Mr Bowen believes the festival will encourage holidaymakers to plan their vacations around the festival, as has been found with the other three events.