The Manufacturing Institute

Children win national competition to make new gadget

27 November 2012

Two lucky children will get to turn their idea for a brand new gadget into a real-life prototype after winning a national competition aimed at encouraging young people to consider a career in manufacturing.

“We Made It!”, a campaign aimed at getting young people thinking about careers in manufacturing, invited 13 – 16 year olds throughout the UK to let their imagination run wild and design a brand new product, whether it be a gismo to help with homework or a piece of sports equipment to make PE more fun.

Adam Kassell from Worthing, West Sussex, beat over 360 other entries submitted by local MPs from around the country with an innovative design for bicycle safety clips with built-in “super bright” LED lights that can be programmed to spell words, enabling motorists to see cyclists more clearly on the road.

Meanwhile Joseph Kruczkowski from Enfield, Middlesex, wowed the judging panel with his idea for a new type of study lamp, which lights a page more evenly enabling people to study for longer without straining their eyes.

Both will now have the chance to take their winning designs to the UK’s first Fab Lab, a digital fabrication laboratory based in Manchester. Working with the Lab’s expert staff they will create a prototype of their invention to be launched at the Houses of Parliament in January 2013.

Both Adam and Joseph were declared overall winners of the competition, which saw designs and ideas from six national finalists being judged by a panel of manufacturing experts including The Dods UK Manufacturing Dialogue, The Manufacturing Institute, Boeing, Finmeccanica, Lloyds Banking Group, the Institute of Mechanical Engineers, Renewable UK and the Confederation of Paper Industries.

The idea behind the competition is that the children get to see that manufacturing is about design and creativity as well as hands-on making of the products. From fashion and video game consoles to cars and airplanes, there are many varied industries with manufacturing at their heart and in which exciting career opportunities exist.

Dr Eddie Kirkby, Charity and Operations Support Manager at The Manufacturing Institute, said:

“The We Made It competition has inspired young people up and down the country and the quality of entries we received was outstanding. All of the young people involved showed a huge amount of imagination with their ideas, many of which provided a solution to an existing problem or improved quality of life, so there was a great deal of deliberation when choosing the winning design.

“Modern manufacturing is based on creativity, smart thinking and innovation, which the winning designs display in abundance. We’re looking forward to seeing Adam and Joseph build on the creativity they’ve already shown by bringing their designs to life at Fab Lab Manchester.”

The six national finalists were:



Product idea

Adam Kassell


St Andrews CE High School for Boys


Worthing, West Sussex


Bicycle safety clips with built-in “super bright” LED lights, enabling motorists to see cyclists more clearly on the road.

Joseph Kruczkowski


St Ignatius’ College


Enfield, Middlesex


Study lamp, which lights a page more evenly enabling people to study for longer without straining their eyes.

Joshua Molyneux


Neston High School


Ellesmere Port, Cheshire


Toothpaste dispenser which distributes an exact pea-sized amount of paste required for a child’s daily brushing.

Reuben Harrison

Ballymena Academy


County Antrim, Northern Ireland


“Scan-a-can” - a pocket-sized barcode scanning device to help blind people with their shopping.

Jason Heer and Frankie Glanville

Bexleyheath Academy


Bexleyheath, Kent



The Zip Watch – a watch with in-built Oyster card holder, which users can scan at London Underground turnstiles.

Jack Poole, Robert Ward and Louis Woodhead

Pudsey Grangefield School




A pair of sunglasses with a clip-on gadget to help prevent sunburn, measuring the outside temperature and alerting the wearer to when UV light levels are becoming dangerous.


For more information about the competition visit

    No articles found

Website design by Rippleffect