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 "Their destiny and where they want to be in life is not going to be a matter of chance ... it's really the choices they make"
Mark Spitz -first athlete to win seven gold medals in a single Olympic Games (1972, Munich)


Each child has the potential to achieve in different ways.

All children can benefit equally, despite their backgrounds because the message from the 24 American astronauts who made the journey from the Earth to the Moon is that, despite terrible odds and high risk, the lessons of the space programme taught them to overcome adversity and fight against the odds to overcome difficulties and achieve highly.

If you choose to control your own destiny you need to set goals. Who better than these incredible men to encourage the actions the young people need to take to move toward their rightful destiny.

Scottish children can be guided to reach for the stars.   


Supported by Tunnocks

In May 2011 Apollo 15 Command Module Pilot,  one of only 18 men alive who made the journey from the Earth to the Moon, 
astronaut Colonel Al Worden spoke to 700 Scottish school children. 
Walk with Destiny are only able to provide the experience free of charge to all of the children and the schools thanks to the generosity of the following:




  In Association with
           Airdrie Astronomical Association


The stewards showed 700 children to their seats where they were welcomed to the fantastic venue of New Wellwynd Parish Church by minister Robbie Hamilton. Mr Hamilton generously allows the use of the church to maximise the number of children who can benefit from the visit of the astronauts.





Al gave an illustrated talk that was full of fascinating and amusing stories from his experiences during astronaut training and his mission to the moon. 
He also talked about future space missions for example to Mars, and highlighted that the pilots for these missions would be of school age just now!
After the talk, Al answered many interesting questions from pupils. All of the pupils who attended thoroughly enjoyed themselves and all listened in fascination. They were a credit to their schools and their teachers. Maybe the first Scottish astronaut or even the first person on Mars will be from this audience?

Just a quick thank you for the talk by Al Worden. I felt really honoured to meet him and he was so interesting. If it wasn't for the hard work of people like yourself these things would never happen, so thank you. The kids were really excited by it and I was proud of their behaviour. These things all add up to a happy and rounded school life.
St Margaret's High School
Thank you for inviting us to listen to the talk from Al Worden.  Both myself and the pupils found it very interesting and extremely worth while.  The pupils particularly expressed their enjoyment of it and it really increased their knowledge and their enthusiasm towards our current Space topic.  They were totally engrossed the whole way through and they raved about it when they got back to school.  I also learnt a few things that I found very interesting and it was a great opportunity for myself and the pupils.
Thank you 
Plains Primary School
Loved it.
Packed full of information, liked hearing about inside the command module
I loved the story about the tomato soup
Victoria Primary School

An excellent afternoon session.  Once in a life time opportunity to hear from a real astronaut.
Such an experience is invaluable to the new curriculum as it has sparked so much interest in the pupils to research space and planet earth.  I hope it will be available next year.
Thank you and best wishes
Dunrobin P7 teacher



Apollo 16 Lunar Module Pilot and 10th Man to walk on the Moon 
appeared in Airdrie in September 2010 thanks to the generosity of Mr Boyd Tunnock MBE of Thomas Tunnock ltd and Mr Tony Gribbon of CISCO. 

Generously Hosted by New Wellwynd Church
                                   With thanks to local employers GO Outdoors

   Destiny – It is a matter of choice!

In 1972 Apollo 16 Astronaut, Charlie Duke walked on the moon.

That was his walk with destiny.

Charlie Duke spoke to over 700 school children aged 12 - 16 on his visit to Scotland.    The children gathered in New Wellwynd Parish Church, a venue that holds 750 people. His mission was to inspire them and motivate them to work hard and choose their own destiny.

Charlie is welcomed to the church by Lord Lieutenant of Lanarkshire Gilbert Cox MBE and minister Robbie Hamilton

New Wellwynd Church was filled with children from Airdrie and all over North Lanarkshire

Charlie talked with the young people, showing film of his historic adventures on the moon and answered many of their questions. Showing them science in action, he explained how working hard at science, maths and technology led him to have an amazing career. He explained how they can choose a different path from those around them and reach their own goals whatever their interest is. 

Charlie explains about his mission

Charlie had the children enthralled with his personal account of his experiences on the Moon in April 1972 talking about the Lunar Rover, the experiments he conducted, as well as his other experiences as Capcom on Apollo 11 and his account of his role in Apollo 13. He then took questions from the children.

Who wants to be the first Scottish astronaut?

His inspiring presentation encouraged the children to reach the highest levels of achievement as successful and confident individuals.

Charlie Duke discovered a passion that changed his life and now inspires others to do the same.

As an entrepreneur, business executive, military officer, test pilot and astronaut, Charlie Duke brings to the speakers platform forty years of experience.  Using his experience to benefit the children he inspired them to raise their aspirations and ambitions. He truly proves the sky is the limit.


Supporting Charlie’s work with the school children is Airdrie Astronomical Association who are curators of Airdrie Public Observatory.  The children have all been invited to follow up events at Airdrie Pubic Observatory as well as a series of talks and events at their weekly association meetings which are delivered free and are open to the public. 

Airdrie Astronomical Association has assisted in the setting up of after-school space clubs to help encourage children to learn about science, space flight and astronomy.

The association invited Charlie to view the observatory where they do so much work with children and community groups. Charlie was introduced to the stunning wall mural which leads all the way up the three flights of stairs to the observatory on the top floor of Airdrie library. The result of a six month project in partnership with Glasgow Metropolitan College HND Fine Art students, the mural has images of space and the solar system with the top floor being a tribute to the Apollo programme. 

Immediately outside the door into the Observatory is a portrait of Charlie. Although he had previously seen photos of it he was delighted to see it in person and appreciated the research and hard work that the students had put into their project. 

Charlie signs his portrait by student Alister Gardner

Alice shows Charlie her painting of a stamp of Valentina Tereshkova, first woman in space

Sonya's tribute to the three astronauts who died in the Apollo 1 fire

Charlie learned about the history and present day use of the facility. Established in 1896 and moving to its current location in 1925, the observatory plays a prominent role in AAA's work in the community. Everyone involved with AAA is a volunteer who gives their time freely to share their passion for space, astronomy and science.

Gavin Bain of AAA's committee then presented Charlie with a small gift in appreciation of his work with the children. 


Gavin thanked Charlie for helping us reach out to so many children

Members of Airdrie Astronomical Association
Tony, Graham, Ken, Gavin, Isabel, Willie, Kirsty, Arthur, Charlie Duke, Alice, Aileen, Yvette, Raymond,
Ruth, Paul, Robert, and Zoe

Charlie had a final photo shoot with some of the members of Airdrie Astronomical Association and left us with very precious memories.
When the public observatory was established in 1896 no one could have imagined that one day men would walk on the moon, let alone that one of those unique individuals would actually one day walk in the observatory.


Our pupils certainly enjoyed their visit!   Mr Duke is quite inspirational, and the kids have so few real heroes any more!
Count us in for any future activities, please!
Many thanks for such a well-organised and exciting event.


The visit was a great success and the children loved the experience. The children loved the fact that they had a question answered by an astronaut.

Thank you very much for organising the event.
Best wishes


Absolutely Fab!
Our pupils were totally engaged by the experience and I am impressed by the number of them that realise how fortunate they were to get tickets free of charge for a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Just to say thanks for the trip!  The pupils really enjoyed Mr Duke's talk and were enthused!  We're going to put it in our local press and put up a display in our 'Corridor of Success'!  Many thanks for including us - and if you have anything else in the future - don't hesitate!

Thanks again,


I hated every minute of training, but I said, "Don't quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion." 
Muhammad Ali

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