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Dippy, the Natural History Museum’s iconic dinosaur cast, has taken up residence at Norwich Cathedral for the final stop on his nationwide touring exhibition Dippy on Tour: A Natural History Adventure.
Ahead of the exhibition opening to the public this afternoon, some of the Cathedral’s choristers were among the first to enjoy a glimpse of Dippy. They celebrated his arrival in song before one of the choristers performed the all-important task of putting the final bone in place on the replica skeleton assisted by Philippa Charles, the Director of the Garfield Weston Foundation.
Dippy on Tour: A Natural History Adventure is being brought to Norwich Cathedral and visitors across the UK by the Natural History Museum in partnership with the Garfield Weston Foundation, and supported by Dell EMC and Williams & Hill. Norwich Cathedral is the eighth and final stop on the tour and Barratt and Cooke is the regional sponsor for the exhibition.
Doug Gurr, Director of London’s Natural History Museum, said: ‘We are thrilled to be bringing Dippy to Norwich Cathedral for the eighth and final stop of Dippy on Tour.’
‘We are incredibly proud to say that Dippy has been visited by over 1.7M people creating record visitor numbers and social and economic benefits for every venue of the nationwide tour so far.’
‘There are important lessons to be learnt from Dippy. The dinosaurs were the victims of a mass extinction event similar to the one we may very well be entering now as we face a planetary emergency.’
‘We hope that at Norwich Cathedral Dippy will once again educate and inspire visitors to foster a long-term respect for the natural world and create a future where both people and planet thrive.’
The Nave of the 900-year-old Norman Cathedral will be Dippy’s home for nearly four months.
The Dean of Norwich, the Very Revd Jane Hedges, said: ‘We are absolutely delighted to welcome the Natural History Museum’s Dippy the dinosaur cast to Norwich Cathedral. It really is quite incredible to see this amazing prehistoric creature stretching out amongst the beautiful architecture of the Cathedral’s Norman Nave.’
‘We hope people will have a lot of fun with Dippy’s visit and that there will also be serious conversations too, about important issues such the relationship between science and faith and also about how we can all play our part to protect our planet for the future.’
‘Bringing Dippy to Norwich Cathedral has been a real team effort, and we would like to say a big thank you to the Natural History Museum and the many different organisations across Norwich and the wider region who have helped to make Dippy’s visit possible.’
Culture Minister Caroline Dinenage said, ‘Dippy has been wowing audiences all across the country and I am pleased that for the final stop of his nationwide tour he will visit the ancient Norwich Cathedral. As we build back better from the pandemic, Dippy will help to attract visitors to the region and boost the local economy.’
Dippy – whose replica skeleton features 292 cast bones (if his skull and jaw are counted as one) - was created between 1903 and 1904, and first arrived at the Natural History Museum in London in 1905. He was unveiled to the public on Friday 12 May 1905 and was the first Diplodocus to go on display anywhere in the world.
Philippa Charles, Director of the Garfield Weston Foundation, who assisted a Cathedral chorister in putting the final toe bone in place, said: ‘We are overjoyed that Dippy is finally able to conclude his national adventure in the iconic Norwich Cathedral, and get back to his mission to inspire people to explore the nature on their doorstep.’
‘Dippy’s purpose has never had more importance and we are so pleased that Norwich Cathedral is enabling people to visit Dippy safely.’
Since Dippy left his London home and embarked on his Natural History Adventure tour in 2018, he has visited Dorset County Museum, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, Ulster Museum, Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow, Great North Museum: Hancock, Newcastle upon Tyne, National Museum Cardiff and Rochdale’s Number One Riverside.
His final stop on his tour is perhaps his most unique, as his visit to Norwich Cathedral will be the first time Dippy has ever been displayed inside a Cathedral.
Whilst at Norwich, Dippy on Tour will be accompanied by fossils loaned by Norfolk Museums Service, a time tunnel created by Norwich School and pupils and an immersive wave sculpture of more than 1,000 fish created by Norfolk-based artist Mark Reed entitled Your Waves Go Over Me. There will also be a special programme of Dippy-inspired events for dinosaur fans of all ages.
The Dippy on Tour exhibition opens to the public from 1pm on Tuesday 13 July, and from then on it will usually be open six days a week until Saturday 30 October 2021.
Notes to editors
Natural History Museum Media contact: Tel: +44 (0)20 7942 5654 / 07799690151 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Images and video available to download here.
The Natural History Museum is both a world-leading science research centre and the most-visited natural history museum in Europe. With a vision of a future in which both people and the planet thrive, it is uniquely positioned to be a powerful champion for balancing humanity’s needs with those of the natural world.
It is custodian of one of the world’s most important scientific collections comprising over 80 million specimens. The scale of this collection enables researchers from all over the world to document how species have and continue to respond to environmental changes - which is vital in helping predict what might happen in the future and informing future policies and plans to help the planet.
The Museum’s 300 scientists continue to represent one of the largest groups in the world studying and enabling research into every aspect of the natural world. Their science is contributing critical data to help the global fight to save the future of the planet from the major threats of climate change and biodiversity loss through to finding solutions such as the sustainable extraction of natural resources.
The Museum uses its enormous global reach and influence to meet its mission to create advocates for the planet - to inform, inspire and empower everyone to make a difference for nature. We welcome over five million visitors each year; our digital output reaches hundreds of thousands of people in over 200 countries each month and our touring exhibitions have been seen by around 30 million people in the last 10 years.
Norwich Cathedral is a Christian presence in the heart of Norfolk and the Diocese of Norwich. It began, over 900 years ago, as the Cathedral church of a Benedictine Monastery, built to inspire by its sheer size and magnificence. The Cathedral continues to fill today’s visitors with a sense of awe and wonder. The primary purpose of a Cathedral is to be a place of Christian worship. It was at the centre of the monastery and the focus of the monks’ most important work, the worship of God. Norwich Cathedral is also the focus of both city and county life. As well as playing host to special civic and legal services, it is also a setting for concerts, talks, exhibitions, degree ceremonies and other community events.
Dippy on Tour
In partnership with the Garfield Weston Foundation
Established over 60 years ago in 1958, the Garfield Weston Foundation is a family-founded, grant-making charity which supports causes across the UK and, in the most recent financial year, gave over £99million. Since it was established, it has exceeded donations of more than £1billion, of which well over half has been given in the past ten years.
One of the most respected charitable institutions in the UK, the Weston Family Trustees are descendants of the founder and they take a highly active and hands-on approach. The Foundation’s funding comes from an endowment of shares in the family business which includes Twinings, Primark, Kingsmill (all part of Associated British Foods Plc) and Fortnum & Mason, amongst others – a successful model that still endures today; as the businesses have grown, so too have the charitable donations.
Known for its transparency, flexibility and straightforward approach, the Foundation supports a broad range of charities from small community organisations to large national institutions. Around 2,000 charities across the UK benefit each year from the Foundation’s grants.
Dell EMC, a part of Dell Technologies, enables organizations to modernize, automate and transform their data center using industry-leading converged infrastructure, servers, storage and data protection technologies. This provides a trusted foundation for businesses to transform IT, through the creation of a hybrid cloud, and transform their business through the creation of cloud-native applications and big data solutions. As a supplier of the Natural History Museum, Dell EMC technology has supported the work of its scientists for many years. Through Dippy on Tour, Dell EMC and the Natural History Museum have the opportunity to inspire the next generation of scientists and encourage them to engage with the natural world. The digital world has a huge role to play in this, and the web app Dippy’s Naturenauts created as part of this partnership, demonstrates the role online and mobile technology can play in encouraging people to explore the outside world.
Williams & Hill have built up a reputation for excellence by firmly establishing themselves as the leading ‘Specialised Transporter of Fine Art, Antiques, Design Furniture and Decorative Objects’. With a highly experienced team working for the world’s major galleries and exhibition venues – they have a true understanding of the requirements for methodical care, consideration and appreciation of whatever may be in their care. No two days are the same, and the excitement of working in their own ever changing art gallery never fades. williamsandhill.com
Lead Regional Sponsor
Barratt and Cooke
Founded in 1880 and based in the heart of Norwich, Barratt and Cooke is one of the oldest independently-owned stockbrokers in the country. With approximately £1.5bn of funds under management, Barratt and Cooke focus on providing a personal portfolio management service to private clients, charities and trusts.
Tour venues and partners
Dorset County Museum is one of the leading independent, charitable, heritage organisations in the Southwest of England. It has a learned Society with 2000 members and receives over 47,000 visitors a year. Its diverse collections contain over 4 million objects including internationally significant geology, archaeology and literary collections. The Museum is a registered charity and operates independently with financial support from Dorset County Council and West Dorset District Council. In May 2015 the Museum was awarded £11.3million from the Heritage Lottery Fund to enable an ambitious redevelopment project. dorsetcountymuseum.org
The Jurassic Coast was designated England’s only natural World Heritage Site in 2001. Day to day site Management of the Jurassic Coast is the work of the Jurassic Coast Trust, a small independent charity with a huge remit. The Trust works to inspire people to love, understand and value the Jurassic Coast, and was instrumental in bringing Dippy down to Dorset in collaboration with the County Museum.
Birmingham Museums Trust is an independent charity that manages the city’s museum collection and venues on behalf of Birmingham City Council. It uses the collection of around 800,000 objects to provide a wide range of arts, cultural and historical experiences, events and activities that deliver accessible learning, creativity and enjoyment for citizens and visitors to the city. Attracting over one million visits a year, the Trust’s venues include Aston Hall, Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, Blakesley Hall, Museum Collections Centre, Museum of the Jewellery Quarter, Sarehole Mill, Soho House, Thinktank and Weoley Castle.
Come face to face with dinosaurs, meet an Ancient Egyptian Mummy and see modern masterpieces with a visit to the Ulster Museum. As Northern Ireland’s treasure house of the past and present, the museum is home to a rich collection of art, history and natural sciences and free to all visitors. The Ulster Museum, part of National Museums Northern Ireland, welcomes nearly half a million visitors annually.
Glasgow Life is the charity which runs services and facilities on behalf of Glasgow City Council. We work in every area of the city and with every community to try and inspire Glasgow’s citizens and visitors to lead richer and more active lives through culture, sport and learning. More than 18 million attendances were recorded to the facilities that we run across the city between 2015 and 2016. Glasgow Museums is the largest museum service in the UK outside London and operates nine easy to reach, accessible and family friendly venues across the city. We are open year-round and entry is free. Glasgow Museums house an extraordinary permanent collection of fine art, historic objects and natural history exhibited in some of Glasgow’s most stunning public buildings.
Great North Museum: Hancock is managed by Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums on behalf of Newcastle University. The Museum brings together the North East’s premier collections of archaeology, natural history, geology and world cultures under one roof. It incorporates collections from the original Hancock Museum, Newcastle University’s former Museum of Antiquities and the Shefton Museum. The Great North Museum is a partnership between Newcastle University, Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, Newcastle City Council, the Natural History Society of Northumbria (NHSN) and the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle upon Tyne (SANT).
Situated in the heart of Cardiff’s elegant civic centre, National Museum Cardiff houses Wales’s national art, geology and natural history collections as well as major touring and temporary exhibitions. On the ground floor of the museum, take an amazing journey in The Evolution of Wales from the very beginnings of time to the present day. The story begins in space with the Big Bang and takes you on a 4,600 million-year journey, bringing you face to face with dinosaurs and woolly mammoths along the way. Witness Wales's diverse natural history on an expedition that begins at the seashore and ends in the mountains. Experience some of the unique environments that make Wales home to over 900 Sites of Special Scientific Interest. The art collection at National Museum Cardiff is one of Europe's finest and includes five hundred years of magnificent paintings, drawings, sculpture, silver and ceramics from Wales and across the world, including one of Europe's best collections of Impressionist art.
Rochdale Borough Council is a local authority in the North West of England which serves more than 200,000 residents. Sitting in the foothills of the Pennines and close to the major cities of Manchester and Leeds, the council is playing a key role in the Northern Powerhouse, and its priorities are people, place and prosperity. Link4Life is the Rochdale Boroughwide Cultural Trust, delivering leisure and cultural provision across the Rochdale borough, including the award-winning arts and heritage centre, Touchstones Rochdale.