Tickets go on sale from today for the World Exclusive Dinosaurs of China – Ground Shakers to Feathered Flyers exhibition which will be held at Wollaton Hall and Lakeside Arts (University of Nottingham) between 1 July and 29 October 2017.
To celebrate, Wollaton Hall will be inviting a group of children from Seely Primary School to visit for the day, wearing masks they have made of their favourite dinosaurs. They will also get to hear about the prime exhibit for the show – the Mamenchisaurus which would have stood as high as three double decker buses and will be on display in a rearing pose that will be the full height of the great hall inside Wollaton Hall.
A double decker bus – courtesy of Nottingham City Transport will be on site to help visitors really understand the scale of this incredible creature.
Nottingham Lakeside Arts very own ‘Dianasaurus’ will also be attending. Dianasaurus is a kind of safari guide character, who will be the key character for Lakeside’s family engagement activities.
Those holding a preview ticket will have access to a special event on Saturday 1 July. They will be the first people to see this truly unique, ‘once in a lifetime’ show. It is the only opportunity to see this exhibition world-wide! The exhibits have never before been out of Asia, and there are no plans for it to tour.
They will also have the chance to listen to talks from the curators and will be part of the celebrations for opening the exhibition with entertainment throughout the day. Tickets for the preview event are £9 adult and £7 child.
Entrance tickets are also available for visits from 2 July and will be for timed slots. Visitors are advised to book ahead to avoid the rush. Parking spaces can also be booked. This gives visitors the opportunity to grab a slot on a particular day for a special occasion. These tickets are £7 adult and £5 child. School parties are £3 per child. Entry to the Lakeside exhibition is free of charge and does not require a ticket.
Lakeside Arts will offer similar family engagement activities throughout the exhibition. The free exhibition at Lakeside will house 2 or 3 exhibits from China and others from the University’s own collection, including mounted skeletons. The exhibition at Lakeside will talk about ‘how do we know what dinosaurs actually looked like’ – i.e. how do scientists and others work out the appearance of dinosaurs (skin, colour, feathers, etc) and how can we recreate this.
Information on the 26 dinosaurs that will be part of the exhibition is being released gradually via subscriber newsletter as well as on the website www.dinosaursofchina.co.uk. Mamenchisaurus will be the tenth exhibit announced.
The exhibits are being shipped from China to the UK on loan from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology in Beijing and the Long Hao Institute of Geology and Paleontology Inner Mongolia.
It will take approximately 40 days to ship the exhibits door to door so it’s estimated they will leave their respective permanent stores in China towards the end of April to arrive in the UK early June. A team of technicians from each institute will fly over to arrive a similar time and will lead the technical aspect of the exhibits’ build alongside the whole exhibition installation.
Cllr Dave Trimble – Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture said: “We are so proud to be working with the University of Nottingham to bring this World Exclusive Exhibition to Nottingham. We look forward to welcoming visitors from all over the UK and beyond. This is a show for adults and children alike and is a really family friendly exhibition with interactive displays and trails throughout as well as a dinosaur activity marquee in the formal gardens at Wollaton Hall.”
Speaking about the Dinosaurs of China exhibition, Jason Feehily, Director of Knowledge Exchange, Asia for The University of Nottingham, said: “Bringing these dinosaurs, which have never before been seen outside of Asia, to Nottingham, is a major coup for the city.
“Due to the great links that both the University and Nottingham City Council have made in China over the 12 years since we established our Ningbo campus, we now have a unique opportunity to host a natural history exhibition of international significance in Nottingham, which will be a tremendous boost both to tourism and the local economy. We are also very keen to hear from any businesses that would like to be part of such a high-profile event for the city.”
James Parkinson, Head of Business and Development for Nottingham Lakeside Arts said: “The Dinosaurs of China Exhibition presents a fantastic opportunity for us to work in close partnership with Wollaton Hall and the City Council, and to celebrate our links with China. With expert help from University of Nottingham academics, the exhibition will focus upon Paleoart to explore how the birds we see around us today have evolved from dinosaurs. Dr Wang Qi is working directly with students from the University of Nottingham’s Department of Architecture and Built Environment to design and build an interactive exhibition to tell this amazing story. The Alxasaurus and the Dilophosaurus will feature as part of the free exhibition at Lakeside, together with other modern day skeletons from the University’s Life Sciences department”.
Rachel Feneley, Nottingham Lakeside Arts Learning Officer said: “Who could not be excited by Dinosaurs? We look forward to welcoming thousands of visitors to try their hands at becoming a Palaeontologist, and to consider how science and art have helped us to shape how we think about dinosaurs today. Over the 4 months of the exhibition we will offer a wide range of activities for all ages to learn about our new feathered friends from China.”
Dr Adam Smith said: “The Mamenchisaurus will be the tallest mounted dinosaur skeleton in the UK, ever. In its rearing up pose it is as high as three double decker buses stacked on top of each other. Mamenchisaurus might have reared up like this to protect itself from large predators such as Sinraptor, the skeleton of which will be posed hunting Mamenchisaurus inside Wollaton Hall.”
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