I’ve been raiding Pexels again! This time, the famous Dippy the Dinosaur, formerly of the Natural History Museum, easily one of my favourite museums. I’ve always been equally terrified of and fascinated by dinosaurs, and will never forget the first time I visited the display of animatronics – I spent ages just staring at them. Going back years later, I was exactly the same. But it’s always been Dippy’s show.
Were (are) you one of the hundreds, if not thousands, who thought it was a real skeleton? I certainly did, and remember being absolutely gutted to find out it was ‘just’ a cast of a real one.
I say ‘just’, because of course, real or not, Dippy’s become something of a national treasure, an icon of the museum, and has even been the star of a film, One of Our Dinosaurs is Missing. Dippy is, due to the multiple copies of the original in Pittsburgh, the most view dinosaur skeleton in the world.
And that number is about to get another boost. After 112yrs in the NHM’s great entrance hall, Dippy has just been removed, ready to go on a tour of the UK, and been replaced by another natural giant, the blue whale. As a marine biologist, I think it’s the perfect decision, and ‘Hope’ will be an excellent replacement for Dippy.
In the north-east, Dippy will be visiting another of my big favourites, the Hancock Museum. This has changed a lot since my early visits to rows of great glass cases full of stuffed animals and other exhibits. Yes, it’s a different, more modern museum now, but it still has that old charm, and I cannot wait for Dippy to come and visit.