Sunday 22 May 2016

Queen Mary University of London’s (QMUL) historic Octagon was the backdrop to the BBC’s Horizon programme, broadcast on Sunday 22nd May, when presenter Michael Mosley investigated ‘E-Cigarettes: Miracle or Menace’.

Horizon filmed in the Octagon over two weekends in January and February with a group of volunteers to consider the phenomenon of e-cigarettes and answer the questions: what does the latest scientific research on e-cigarettes reveal? what are they doing to our health? are they better for you than cigarettes? is passive vaping harmful? And, can they stop you from smoking regular cigarettes? Presenter Mosley met scientists studying e-cigarettes from around the world and asked the volunteers to try to give up smoking regular cigarettes while also taking up smoking e-cigarettes himself, for a month, to see the effects on his own health, despite being a committed non-smoker.

The Octagon, the former library of QMUL is a versatile space with over 400 square metres of floor space against triple height walls and a domed ceiling with famous literati keeping an eye on proceedings. As well as hosting Horizon and Question Time, the Octagon is used for wedding receptions, launches and networking and is at the centre of QMUL life during graduations when it hosts celebrating graduates and their guests.

Katy Baron, Sales Executive for Events & Hospitality QM comments “The hosting of filming for the BBC and the scientific background of Horizon provides the ideal forum for QMUL to share the contribution it is making to life in the realms of research alongside the versatility of its facilities for events."