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Friday, 20 July 2012

Fossil events 25-28 July

With the start of the school holidays, there are lots of fossil-related events coming up at Lyme Regis Museum, including the first of four Family Fossil Days on Thursday 26 July with 'open house' at the museum and lots of opportunities for seeing, handling, hearing and talking about fossils. Also a gazebo outside on the terrace for even more activities, including the ever popular ammonite polishing. We're open free of charge all day from 10am to 5pm.

Wednesday 25 July sees a rockpooling session out on Broad Ledge to explore the magical world of sea creatures left in the wake of the outgoing tide. It meets at the museum at 3.45pm and takes about an hour and a half. Price £5 adults; children and students £2.50.

On Saturday 28 July there is a 'Facts on Fossils' mini-masterclass for all ages and levels. It is a session in learning how to find fossils, handling the extraordinary fossil finds that Chris and Paddy bring along, taking the opportunity to have your own fossils identified and much more. It usually lasts an hour... Price £4 for adults; free for children and students.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Facts on Fossils

'Facts on Fossils' is a new regular event organized by Lyme Regis Museum. It is more than a talk - it is a a learning experience for all ages and levels of interested fossilists, with plenty of fossil handling, tips on how to find and identify, and lots of recently-found extraordinary fossils to see and hear about, as well as a bring-your-own-fossils-for-identification offer.

Chris Andrew and Paddy Howe will be leading 'Facts on Fossils' in their own action-packed, fun-filled style in a new venue: it will be held in the Langmoor Room on Marine Parade on most occasions. Tickets for 'Facts on Fossils' are £4 for adults and free for children.

This month, the first 'Facts on Fossils' events will be held at 2.30 pm on Sunday 15th and Saturday 28th, with more sessions to come over the rest of the year.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Lyme’s Paralympic Gold

In the 1984 Paralympic Games in New York, Lyme Regis resident Diane Wiscombe won a gold medal. Her magnificent achievement is the subject of a new exhibition ‘Lyme’s Paralympic Gold’ at Lyme Regis Museum which opens on Thursday 12 July. Di Wiscombe, who died earlier this year, was the daughter of Muriel and Tony Wiscombe of a well-known local family. Her father died two years ago.

Di Wiscombe, born in 1965, was one of twins born prematurely and was diagnosed as having cerebral palsy. The disability first affected her walking but, later in life, movement of her arms and hands became more difficult. She attended Saint Michael’s Infant and Junior Schools between 1970 and 1976 and then became a weekly boarder at Princess Margaret School, Taunton, a school for children with physical disabilities.

In 1981 Di moved as a full-time boarder to the prestigious National Star Centre at Cheltenham. Her intention was to return to Lyme and run the office of the family business, A. and F. Wiscombe, a long-established Lyme building company, but her life changed when she met Ken Black, swimming coach at the Star Centre. Recognising Di’s potential he entered her in local and regional swimming galas and soon she was competing in major competitions.

Convinced that she could win medals at the highest level, Di stayed in Cheltenham until 1985 to continue her punishing training schedule. The haul of medals grew larger and she began to compete internationally. Di was picked for the British Paralympic team for both swimming and boccia, a form of bowls played with small, sand-filled leather balls.

The 1984 Games in New York were the first Paralympic Games to be held in the same country as the summer Olympic Games. The opening ceremony was presided over by President Ronald Reagan whom Di met at the ceremony.

It proved to be a triumphant Games for the British contingent who won 331 medals and came second in the medal table. Di won two medals: a Gold for the 25 metres freestyle swimming, where she set a new world record, and a Silver medal for women’s individual boccia.

Di returned to Lyme in 1984. She needed to maintain her schedule and was helped by the Royal Marines at Lympstone, who pushed her to her full potential. Di’s mother Muriel also became part of the training team.

In 1988 Di was picked for both the swimming and boccia teams and travelled to Seoul, Korea, without her family. The British team came third behind the USA and West Germany with 183 medals. Di won a Silver medal for boccia.

In 1991 Di moved from the family home to a bungalow in Jericho, Lyme, where with support she was able to lead an independent life. She worked on her computer, travelled and enjoyed shopping trips and concerts.

In 2011 Di took on the challenge of driving a specially adapted car which would enable her to drive free of her wheelchair. Sadly, Di died before she had a chance achieve this.

‘Lyme’s Paralympic Gold’ exhibition, curated by Ken Gollop, will run from Thursday 12 July until the end of September.

Everyone is welcome to the museum free of charge on the opening day of the exhibition, which is also the day of the Olympic Torch procession through Lyme Regis. The museum is open every day: from 10am to 5pm Monday to Saturday, and 11am to 5pm on Sundays. Entrance ticket for a year is £3.95 for adults, £3.45 for seniors; children and students free.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Museum Events in July

Rockpooling walks (Sunday 8, Monday 9, Tuesday 10, Wednesday 25 July)

Discover rockpooling on the beach at Lyme Regis with museum marine biologist Chris Andrew and geologist Paddy Howe. See at close quarters the magical world of seaweed, fish and creatures like velvet swimming crabs and squat lobsters that lie in the wake of the receding tide. Rockpooling groups leave the museum according to the tides: Sunday 8th at 3pm, Monday 9th at 3.30pm, Tuesday 10th at 4pm, Wednesday 25th at 3.45pm.

Know Your Fossils! (Sunday 15 , Saturday 28 July)

Lyme Regis Museum’s fossil experts Chris Andrew and Paddy Howe invite you to ‘Know Your Fossils!’ at the Museum at 2.30pm. Lots of real fossils to handle and tips on how to find and identify. Bring along your own discoveries for identification.

Family Fossil Days (Thursday 26 July)

Fossil hunters Paddy Howe, Chris Andrew and Brandon Lennon are at Lyme Regis Museum for mini fossil festivals in July and August. Cut and polish an ammonite and make it the most beautiful fossil of all time to take home. Handle 190-million-year-old treasures, ask questions and bring your own prized collection for identification. Impressive finds on display including spectacular recent discoveries. Free admission to all.

Mary Anning Walks (Saturday 7, 14, 21, 28 July)

Explore the paths and streets of Old Lyme as Mary Anning knew them with guide Natalie Manifold. Mary Anning Walks depart from the museum every Saturday during July at 1.30pm.

Fossil Walks

  • Monday 2 July 2012 09.00
  • Tuesday 3 July 2012 10.00
  • Wednesday 4 July 2012 11.00
  • Thursday 5 July 2012 11.45
  • Friday 6 July 2012 12.30
  • Saturday 7 July 2012 13.15
  • Tuesday 17 July 2012 09.15
  • Wednesday 18 July 2012 10.00
  • Thursday 19 July 2012 10.45
  • Friday 20 July 2012 11.30
  • Saturday 21 July 2012 12.00
  • Sunday 22 July 2012 12.45
  • Monday 23 July 2012 13.15
  • Tuesday 24 July 2012 14.00
  • Tuesday 31 July 2012 9.00