Three students from Birkenhead Sixth Form College have won the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Young Analyst Competition in the North West region.

The team become the first Wirral school or College to take home the cup, known as the Ludwig Mond Trophy, in over ten years.

Chemistry students Hamza Jouma, Adnan Salem and Beth Smith beat competition from over 25 schools across the North West of the country, with nearly half of the competitors being from grammar or independent schools.

The team now heads for the national final held at Bangor University over two days in June.

The Royal Society of Chemistry’s competition involves the teams of students being given blind tasks to perform in the University of Liverpool’s new state-of-the-art laboratories, testing their ability to think on their feet and apply knowledge from the classroom in different circumstances.

Adnan, Beth and Hamza with the Ludwig Mond Trophy

Along with the sizeable trophy, Hamza, Adnan and Best also secured a £250 prize for the College’s Chemistry department and each took home a £25 Amazon gift voucher.

Accompanying Chemistry teacher, Steve Houghton, said: “The team had to carry out a range of undergraduate level experiments to precisely analyse the content of calcium and iron in samples of milk and Irn-Bru.  To win requires a high level of practical ability, a deep understanding of the chemistry involved and excellent mathematical skills.”

Steve concluded: “I am immensely proud at how well they performed against many schools and colleges from across the North West region and we are looking forward to competing in the National Final in June.”

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