Department for Business, Innovation and Skills
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The search is on for UK’s youngest innovators

The search is on for UK’s youngest innovators

News Release issued by the COI News Distribution Service on 18 May 2012

The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) has launched this year’s Cracking Ideas competition and is inviting children across the country to use their creativity to invent a special space-themed gizmo or gadget.

12 regional finalists in different age-groups will be named Britain's youngest innovators, from which three national winners will be crowned Cracking Ideas champions for 2013.

The Cracking Ideas competition, now in its sixth successful year, is headed by Aardman’s inventive duo Wallace & Gromit and aims to engage young innovators, encourage creativity and raise awareness of intellectual property rights. It also seeks to promote respect for others’ intellectual property.

Intellectual Property Minister, Baroness Wilcox said:

“This competition provides a fantastic opportunity for young British innovators to get creative, whilst helping them to understand the importance of protecting the rights to their creations.”

Parents and teachers are asked to encourage as many four to 16 year olds as possible to participate. By taking part, children and educators will discover how patents, trade marks, copyright and design have a part to play in everyday life and how this ties in with 21 st Century space-age technology.

This year’s competition requires participants to construct a special Moon Bug lunar contraption and then demonstrate how to protect their creativity using patents, trade marks, design and copyright. Material will be provided but participants can also use their own materials to make models, take photographs, draw plans and record their creation.

As well as the annual competition, children and educators can find innovative games, lesson plans with links to the UK curriculums, creative challenges and fun facts about inventing from ambassadors Wallace & Gromit at

The competition runs until 30 April 2013 and further details are available at

Notes to editors 1. Cracking Ideas is a Government-backed project and uses a combination of lesson plans, activity packs, challenges and dedicated website, to encourage innovation and creativity amongst children aged 4 - 16 all with links to the UK curriculum.

2. Aardman, which is based in Bristol, was co-founded and run by Peter Lord and David Sproxton. It is a world leader in animation and it produces feature films, television series and television commercials for the domestic and international market.

3. 4,027 four to 16 year olds took part in last year's sports themed competition and the winners will be announced in June 2012

4. The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is within the Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills (BIS) and is responsible for the national framework of Intellectual Property rights, comprising patents, designs, trade marks and copyright.

5. Its role is to help manage an IP system that encourages innovation and creativity, balances the needs of consumers and users, promotes strong and competitive markets and is the foundation of the knowledge-based economy.

6. It operates in a national and an international environment and its work is governed by national and international law, including various international treaties relating to Intellectual Property (IP) to which the United Kingdom is a party.

7. For further information, please contact Veena Mapara on 0207 215 5614.

8. For emergency media calls out-of-hours please contact the duty press officer at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills on +44 (0) 207 215 3505.


BIS Press Office

Veena Mapara
Phone: 020 7215 5614

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