Young students in the north of England have reluctantly handed some rare samples of moon rock back to the Science and Technology Facilities Council.
The national science body regularly allows both primary and secondary schools to make use of its collections in order to help them get pupils interested in physics.
And, if the case of the Holy Cross College in Bury is anything to go by, the idea is a winner.
According to a new report from the Bury Times, the £7 million worth of samples that went on display at the college, including rocks taken from the surface of the moon and from asteroids which have crashed to earth, helped spark students' interests in all things scientific.
Commenting on the successful initiative, Professor Keith Mason, chief executive of the council, told the local paper: "It's incredible to think when you hold a meteorite, you are handling something that may have travelled millions of miles to fall on the Earth."
Research carried out by the Royal Society recently revealed 16 per cent of schools in England currently don't offer physics as an A-level option.
Posted by Tim Colman