Furry frontier as Morecambe kids launch hotel mascot into space

Photo Neil Cross: Teaching Assistant Carol Bonehill in the space suit at Morecambe Bay Primary School, with 'Sam the Dog', the Morecambe Midland Hotels lucky dog mascot, before blasting a smaller version of Sam into orbit.
Photo Neil Cross: Teaching Assistant Carol Bonehill in the space suit at Morecambe Bay Primary School, with 'Sam the Dog', the Morecambe Midland Hotels lucky dog mascot, before blasting a smaller version of Sam into orbit.

It will be one small step for Sam but a giant leap for a group of primary school kids when they launch a ‘dog’ into space.

The dog in question isn’t a real one though – it’s Sam, the Midland Hotel’s cuddly canine mascot, who is about to go 
into orbit in the name of science.

Photo Neil Cross
Teaching Assistant Carol Bonehill in the space suit at Morecambe Bay Primary School, with 'Sam the Dog', the Morecambe Midland Hotels lucky dog mascot, before blasting a smaller version of Sam into orbit.

Photo Neil Cross Teaching Assistant Carol Bonehill in the space suit at Morecambe Bay Primary School, with 'Sam the Dog', the Morecambe Midland Hotels lucky dog mascot, before blasting a smaller version of Sam into orbit.

A team of budding scientists at Morecambe Bay Primary School are designing a physics project to use helium balloons, GPS tracking equipment and action cameras to see how high they can send Sam.

They were due to launch the brave pooch from the seafront near the Midland today (Tuesday).

The small cuddly toy version of Sam will be fitted with a tracking device and is predicted to land somewhere in Yorkshire, depending on the prevailing weather conditions.

Sam’s adventure will end a two-week space initiative for the children.

This has included rocket science, Martian experiments and space exploration in a planetarium.

The UK Space Agency also gave them a real-life space suit for the pupils to learn about space survival.

“We will also be using the data and the images recorded from Sam the Dog’s 
flight as teaching materials,” said Siobhan Collingwood, head teacher at Morecambe Bay.

“It all contributes to the learning experience 
for the students and 
provides a sense of visual achievement.”

Ben Berry from English Lakes Hotels, who run the Midland, said: “This is an exciting science project for the children.

“It puts them in charge of their very own edge of space mission and we are more 
than happy to give Sam the Dog the chance to follow in Tim Peake’s recent footsteps.

“We hope to get a nice clear day which would provide stunning aerial photographs and footage from above Morecambe and the whole of the bay area.

“And who knows where Sam will end up?”