Actual, Nasa astronauts visit Signs Express headquarters in Norwich

Signs Express welcomes Nasa astronauts to its headquarters in Norwich.

The seven manned crew of Space Shuttle Discovery completed their journey to the International Space Station which orbits the earth at an incredible 200 miles up, earlier this year. After touch down, the astronauts embarked on their next journey – a visit to the UK to inspire young minds and meet with local business people to promote the need for a technically educated workforce.

The Norfolk Exchange, a not-for-profit organisation which promotes links between schools and businesses in the county, heard that there would be a visit from the astronauts to the UK this month. The opportunity was quickly snapped up when Norfolk was suggested as another destination along with London and Cardiff.

As sponsors of the event, Signs Express gave a warm welcome to two of the astronauts at its headquarters on St Matthews Road, Norwich. Ken Ham and Karen Nyberg talked about their first hand experiences, explaining the purpose of the mission and regaling stories of what it was really like to be in space. The pair were also presented with several Norwich goodies to celebrate their first time in Norfolk.

Signs Express managing director Craig Brown commented on the event: “We were very excited to be given the opportunity to receive such special guests. The scheme to help promote technological learning is important in this day and age, especially as the number of students studying sciences and engineering is decreasing year-on-year. Listening to the experiences of both Ken and Karen was inspiring. I do think, however,” Craig continued with a smile, “that the pair could possibly reconsider their career choice after their quick lesson in sign making from our operations manager Justin Pearce. I think we saw a lot of potential.”

As well as visiting Signs Express the astronauts also visited three separate schools in the area including Reepham High School, where Signs Express were delighted to present with a plaque to commemorate the event. The astronauts then gave an evening talk and Q&A session at the John Innes Conference Centre in Norwich before returning to London to continue their trip onto Cardiff.

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