Mary Anning Weekend - September 2012
Lyme Regis Museum's annual celebration of the life of Mary Anning took place on 29th and 30th September with a weekend of talks, exhibitions and family events. It confirms the scientific importance of Lyme Regis and its museum that the weekend attracted speakers of the calibre of Sir Crispin Tickell, academics from the universities of Oxford and Bristol, and Tom Sharpe of the National Museum of Wales. Geologists from the Natural History Museum in London were among guests observed discussing Lyme’s fossils with local collectors.
(Click here to see the text of Sir Crispin Tickell's talk)
The talks were well attended and when faced with the absence through ill-health of one of the speakers, the museum was able to organise a replacement event from among the large number of eminent palaeontologists and fossil collectors in the audience!
A highlight of the weekend was the display of fossils discovered on Lyme's beaches almost 200 years ago by Elizabeth Philpot, Mary Anning’s friend and colleague,
An example of a fossil fish collected by the Philpot sisters is shown on the right.
One unexpected benefit – Oxford University Museum of Natural History (who loaned the Philpot fish) offered to loan more material, and have suggested that an exhibition of recently discovered Lyme fossils be hosted at Oxford.
There were also activities for the young at heart including fossil polishing and assisting artist Darrell Wakelam to make a wonderful model of a fossil fish - Xiphactinus.
Pictures are shown below of the Xiphactinus in preparation, Sophie who was one of Darrell's enthusiastic helpers and the finished model.