Dippy the dinosaur in Rochdale

Dippy on display in Number One Riverside, Rochdale

Dippy on Tour opens at Number One Riverside Rochdale

Dippy on Tour: A Natural History Adventure has opened at Number One Riverside, Rochdale. 

The seventh stop for the Natural History Museum's famous Diplodocus cast is also the first non-museum venue of the nationwide tour.

Dippy arrives in Rochdale following an extremely successful stay at National Museum Cardiff, where 213,740 visitors came to marvel at the well-travelled Diplodocus. This is a visitor number increase of 42% on average when compared with the previous year.

Dippy on Tour is being brought to Number One Riverside, Rochdale 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.

Director of the Natural History Museum London, Sir Michael Dixon, said, ‘It has been a joy to see the enthusiasm with which Dippy has been welcomed to Rochdale.

‘Dippy will take pride of place in the council’s energy efficient offices, Number One Riverside, which incorporate renewable and low carbon technology. This is a fitting venue for Dippy who has become an ambassador for the natural world, engaging audiences of all ages in conversations about our crucial role in the future of the planet.

‘We hope that visitors will be inspired and leave with an increased awareness of the steps we can take to help protect the natural world.

‘As with every venue that Dippy has visited so far, we are sure he will prove a huge hit for Number One Riverside and we wish them the best of luck with Dippy on Tour’s penultimate stop.’

Whilst in residence at the tour’s previous venue, National Museum Cardiff, Dippy reached the impressive milestone of 1.5 million visitors overall. His presence in National Museum Cardiff contributed to a huge increase in visitors during the school holidays with more than 54,000 people coming to see Dippy in the October half term - a 258% increase on the previous year.

Councillor Janet Emsley, cabinet member for Neighbourhoods, Community and Culture at Rochdale Borough Council, said: ‘It’s no exaggeration to say that Dippy is a national treasure and we’re honoured to be hosting him here in Rochdale on behalf of the North West.

‘Bringing a world-class exhibit like this into an everyday environment like a council building will open it up to thousands of children who wouldn’t ordinarily get the chance to see something like this and I think it will be a once in a lifetime experience for them. I want them to remember their visit to Dippy in Rochdale for many years to come.’

Over the last week, expert conservators have assembled the 292-bone, 21-metre-long skeleton cast in Number One Riverside making sure Dippy looks his best for his eager audience.

Philippa Charles, Director of the Garfield Weston Foundation, said: ‘We are absolutely delighted that Dippy proved so successful in Cardiff. Dippy’s mission to inspire people to explore the natural world around them and think about their role in protecting it is more important than ever. We know he will continue to be a hit at his new home in Rochdale.’

Whilst in Rochdale, Dippy on Tour will be accompanied by a special Dippy exhibition at the neighbouring Touchstones building. The exhibition comprises of interactives and hands-on displays detailing what Rochdale looked like millions of years ago as well as detailing the challenges the Earth faces today. Visitors will also be able to see the fossil of the famous Rochdale scorpion.

Dippy on Tour: A Natural History Adventure is at Number One Riverside, Rochdale from 10 February to 28 June 2020.

For further images please click here.

Ends

Notes to editors

Tour dates

  • Dorset County Museum, 10 February - 7 May 2018
  • Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, 26 May - 9 September 2018 Ulster Museum, 28 September 2018 - 6 January 2019
  •  Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow, 22 January - 5 May 2019
  •  Great North Museum, Hancock, Newcastle upon Tyne, 18 May - 6 October 2019
  •  National Museum Cardiff, 19 October 2019 - 26 January 2020
  • Number One Riverside, Rochdale, 10 February - 28 June 2020
  • Norwich Cathedral, 11 July - 31 October 2020

The Natural History Museum

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.

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 with grants around £70million annually. It has donated over £1billion to charities since it was established.

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.

From small community organisations to large national institutions, the Foundation supports a broad range of charities and activities that make a positive impact in the communities in which they work. More than 1,800 charities across the UK benefit each year from the Foundation’s grants.

Tour Sponsors

DELL EMC

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

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.

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.

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.

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 venue for concerts, talks, exhibitions, degree ceremonies and other community events. 

Contact Us

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Email: press@nhm.ac.uk