Fossils from Britain

The Fossils from Britain gallery gives an insight into our fossil record, preserved in mud, silt or sand and, over time, transformed into sedimentary rock. View ancient creatures like trilobites and ammonites, and marvel at fossilised shark teeth.

Trilobite fossil, part of the Fossils from Britain display.

Trilobites are an extinct group of marine creature that lived in prehistoric oceans 570–245 million years ago. Their closest living relative is the horseshoe crab, and they are the first known fossils with eyes.

Small ammonites.

Ammonites were sea creatures that lived 245–65 million years ago. Their beautifully coiled and marked shells are divided into chambers. Ammonites used the chamber near the opening to live in and the others were filled with gas for buoyancy.

Fossilised shark teeth.

Shark teeth are the main part of the creature to become fossilised, as sharks have no bones and their skeletons are formed from cartilage. Fossil teeth were known as tongue stones because they were thought to resemble serpent tongues turned to stone.

Mineral formation in the shape of a mouse.

Sometimes rock and mineral formations can resemble fossils – can you spot the ‘mouse fossil’ and see this for yourself?