The Queen opens Brain Research Imaging Centre
7 June 2016
Royal party given tour of £44m facility that is unique in Europe
Her Majesty The Queen has opened the new £44m Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Centre (CUBRIC).
The Queen, accompanied by His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, was given a tour of the Centre, which contains the best neuroimaging equipment in the world to help unravel the mysteries of the human brain.
The royal visitors were greeted by crowds of well-wishers on their arrival and departure from CUBRIC, including children from Grangetown Primary School invited by the University as part of one of its flagship engagement projects.
Several pupils from school took part in demonstrations of Brain Games - fun and interactive activities designed to teach children about the brain – to entertain the royal visitors.
Three children from Llandaff City Church in Wales Primary School were presented to The Queen after winning a science competition run by the University. The children drew pictures of how the brain works as part of an annual Brain Games competition.
The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh were given a tour of the building’s state-of-the-art facilities, including Europe’s most powerful MRI scanner, and met key staff and funders.
During the tour, The Queen directed a scan on one of the Centre’s powerful MRI scanners.
Her Majesty also met 40-year-old David Humphrey from Newport, who worked as design manager for construction firm BAM on the CUBRIC project.
David has Multiple Sclerosis and has been taking part in an ongoing CUBRIC research study as a volunteer at the Helen Durham Centre for Neuroinflammatory Disease at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff.
To open the Centre, The Queen unveiled a specially commissioned sculpture created by PhD student Gemma Williams, from the University’s School of Psychology.
The Centre, designed by global architecture and technology practice IBI Group and built by construction firm BAM, is four times larger than the University's existing brain research imaging facilities.
The new facility has been part-funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government, the Medical Research Council (MRC), the Wellcome Trust, the Welsh Government and the Wolfson Foundation.
Together, these investments are supporting innovation in world-class brain imaging research, including the creation of highly-skilled research jobs in Wales. More than £27m of the cost has been provided by funders.
The opening kick starts the University’s Summer of Innovation, a celebration of the University’s innovative work that will bring people together from academia and industry to build and strengthen connections and partnerships.