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Dr Jane Goodall announced as 2019 Norwich Science Festival headline event


Renowned ethologist and conservationist Dr Jane Goodall DBE (founder of the Jane Goodall Institute, and UN Messenger of Peace) has been announced as the headline speaker at the 2019 Norwich Science Festival.

Famed for her work studying the wild chimpanzees of Gombe in western Tanzania, a study that is still ongoing nearly 60 years later, Dr Goodall has dedicated her life to understanding animal behaviour, promoting conservation, and encouraging new generations to care for our environment and all its inhabitants. Jane made hugely important observations during her career – including the fact that chimpanzees were meat-eaters and that they made and used tools, which up until that time, were behaviours assumed only undertaken by human primates.

In this special event (Reasons for Hope, Thursday 24 October, Norwich Cathedral), Jane Goodall will be in conversation with Festival patron and evolutionary biologist, Professor Ben Garrod – discussing her work and the core programmes of the Jane Goodall Institute, including TACARE, the sanctuaries for orphan chimpanzees and Roots & Shoots, the global programme empowering young people of all ages in more than 50 countries to make their world a better place

Natalie Bailey, Festival Producer, said: 

“It’s an absolute honour to host the inspirational and revered conservationist Dr Jane Goodall at this year’s Norwich Science Festival. She has inspired generations to learn about our wonderful world and throughout the UK there are groups of Roots & Shoots students making a difference on a daily basis.”

Also announced is a special adults-only science late event, Science After Six (Friday 18 October, The Forum). Expect cocktails, music and hands-on science in this kid-free event, with scientific comedy, edible grubs and insects, rap science, a battle of the organs, the journey of food and more.

The Festival has also teamed up with Norwich Arts Centre to offer two unique events: [Reach The Moon], a multi-sensory audio/visual feast from the [UNIT] collective celebrating the 50th anniversary of the first manned moon landing (Tuesday 22 & Wednesday 23 October), and Balloon Debate: Can Veganism Save the Planet? – a fun, fierce and fascinating evening of debate on one of the inflammatory questions of our time (Sunday 27 October).

Other shows on sale from Wednesday 24 July include children’s puppet show Microbodyssey (Saturday 19 October, Norwich Puppet Theatre), the Wilderland Film Festival – a brand new wildlife film festival (Sunday 20 October, UEA Enterprise Centre), and a walk and stargazing event in North Norfolk with Festival patron Mark Thompson (Thursday 24 October, as part of Norfolk Walking and Cycling Festival).

The newly announced shows join four events already on sale, in collaboration with Norwich Playhouse: The Book of Humans with Adam Rutherford (Tuesday 22 October), This is Going to Hurt with Adam Kay (Wednesday 23 October), Horrible Science Show with Nick Arnold (Thursday 24 October) and Maddie Moate’s Fantastic Factory Tour (Monday 21 October). Early release tickets for Adam Kay and Maddie Moate have sold out, but more will be released on 21 August.

Norwich Science Festival takes place 18–26 October, at The Forum and other venues around the city, with headline sponsorship from Anglian Water. It is a celebration of the ground-breaking scientific research associated with the city, and is a partnership initiative involving many organisations from across the region, coordinated by The Forum, Norwich.

The full line-up of events, talks and shows will be announced and on sale on 21 August at 9am at



For more information on Norwich Science Festival, please contact Jan Robertson, Norwich Science Festival Marketing Manager:

Image: Jane Goodall Institute