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Thursday, 11 August 2011

Curator’s Newsletter August 2011

From Mary Godwin, Director of Lyme Regis Museum:

International Interest!
We’ve noticed that we’re getting an ever-increasing number of international visitors to the museum. In the visitors’ book over the last couple of weeks alone we’ve had people from Japan, Australia, Sweden, Italy, Lithuania, Spain, USA, Hungary, Wales, Latvia, Netherlands, South Africa, Denmark, New Zealand, France, Germany, Ireland, Brazil and Canada! In the light of all this international interest, in future we’re also going to be focusing more effort on marketing to people outside the UK. We’ll be making contact with key individuals, the media and special interest groups abroad.

New Fossil Walk Guide
Paddy and Chris have recruited a new fossil walk guide in the form of Ben Brooks who has just graduated with an MSc in Geology from Southampton University. This means that on the days Ben is around, we can take up to 40 people on our fossil walks. This will be a big help as in recent weeks the fossil walks have been heavily oversubscribed.

Volunteer ‘Team’ Needed for History of Sport Exhibition 2012
We’re looking for a team of two or more people to research and put together our local history exhibition for 2012. Inevitably the topic will be the History of Sport in Lyme, to tie into the Olympics! We already have the research from a past exhibition about the football club ‘Come On You Seasiders!’ and lots of info. in the museum files but this will be a great opportunity to develop our archives on the whole range of local sports clubs, school sports etc. The exhibition will be at the Malthouse in summer 2012. Putting together a big exhibition like this is a major project and not for the fainthearted but advice and support from our local history experts will be on hand. If anyone would like to discuss what’s involved with this project with a view to volunteering, please do get in touch with me.

New Children’s Quiz and Gallery Activities
Volunteers will be interested to hear that volunteers Richard and Sue Cousins have produced two revamped children’s quizzes for the museum. The wordsearch is now available as an optional separate sheet. Sue has also taken on looking after the dressing-up clothes and children’s gallery activities. These take quite a beating in the school holidays so having someone to keep an eye on them and ensure they are in good order is a great help!

Mary Anning Day Tickets now on Sale!
Tickets are now on sale for Mary Anning Day, 24th September. Our theme this year is ‘200 Years of Discovery’ to tie in with the Anning’s discovery of the great ichthyosaur skull in 1811. Once again we have a full programme of talks and activities for all the family. Artist Darrell Wakelam will be working with families to conjure up something amazing with papier-mache all day in the museum and the museum is open free all day. Our speakers in the Marine Theatre during the day and evening offer something for everyone. For fossil enthusiasts, Paddy Howe and Chris Andrew will be talking about recent fossil finds in the Lyme area and Richard Edmonds from the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site team will be talking about the economics of fossil collecting. For those with an interest in the life and times of Mary Anning and her contemporaries, Tom Sharpe from the National Museum of Wales (always a highly entertaining speaker) will be talking about the relationship between Mary and her friend and contemporary Henry de la Beche, founding Director of the Geological Survey of Great Britain. In the evening we have talks from two of our Patrons. Our first evening speaker is internationally renowned botanist Sir Ghillean Prance, former director of the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, who will be talking on the theme of ‘200 Years of Discovery in the Amazon’, where he is still actively researching. To round off the day, author Tracy Chevalier will be talking on the theme of ‘Finding the Big One – the Anning’s First Great Ichthyosaur’, with readings from contemporary accounts and from her own work. The full programme can be seen on the museum website now.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the mention Mary, just one minor correction, my degree was an MSci (an integrated 4 yr undergraduate degree) rather than an MSc (postgraduate degree).
Thanks again for the mention,
Ben Brooks

Andrew said...

Thanks, Ben. Let us know (via Keith or Chris) if you come across anything Lyme-related that would be suitable for this blog... we're running short of material!

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