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Children compete to become 'Lego masters' in regional tournament

Students competing with lego robots. Credit: ITV News Anglia

School children from across the East of England have taken part in the 'First Lego League' tournament being held in Cambridge.

Watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Elodie Harper.

The pupils aged between 9 and 16 years gathered at the University of Cambridge's Department of Engineering to compete.

For the last five months teams of up to ten have been working to build and programme autonomous robots using Lego.

The robots had to complete a number of 'missions' in an arena. Credit: ITV News Anglia

The robots will be tasked with completing missions on a playing field in just 2.5 minutes.

'First Lego League' is a global science and technology challenge designed to encourage young people to take an interest in real world issues and develop key skills for future careers.

'First Lego League' has been running for around 21 years globally and in the UK for about 12 years.

Winners will go on to the England and Wales final in Bristol in February where they will have the chance to win a place in the international final in America.

The tournament was held at the University of Cambridge. Credit: ITV News Anglia

"The skills that young people are learning are coding and programming skills, engineering skills, researching, problem solving. The technical skills are wonderful, but it's the softer skills that they are learning as well, team work, communication and that really important problem solving which they need to become future engineers."

– Lowri Walton, Education manager for First Lego League
Children compete in set missions with their robots constructed form special kits. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Students pre-programme their robots to complete missions with special kits.

Organisers say the skills gained in competitions like this help students go onto future careers within engineering.