Author: Lucy Culkin

The final countdown is underway!

After a phenomenal 17 hours of fundraising, which has seen over 400 pledges of funds from local and international communities, The Jurassic Coast Trust have raised 70% of the fundraising target, which will enable the partnership with Lyme Regis Museum to bid on a handwritten letter from Mary Anning to William Buckland, written in 1829.

The fundraising efforts to acquire this very rare and exciting letter, have been led by the Jurassic Coast Trust, in partnership with Lyme Regis Museum letter which will see the letter go under the hammer at 2pm today at Sotheby’s auction house.

The letter is of significant cultural importance for the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site and in particular for the Jurassic Coast Collection project, which aims to catalogue and increase accessibility to magnificent fossils and specimens which contribute to the Outstanding Universal Value of this Site. This letter undoubtedly contributes to the historical and contemporary palaeontological significance of the Site, and represents an exceptionally rare opportunity.

In the letter, Mary references a specimen which is on display in the Natural History Museum’s collection, and makes the link between her beginnings in her home town of Lyme Regis, and how she became a pioneering and resilient fossil collector.

Mary opened the door for improved inclusion and engagement, inspiring future generations of geologists and palaeontologists who still walk in her footsteps along the beaches of Lyme Regis today.

Chris Reedman, Jurassic Coast Collections Officer says: ” We are overwhelmed by the support we have had so far and need the final push to get us over the finish line. To bring this letter back to Lyme Regis, the home of Mary Anning, inspires future collectors, who can empathise with how Mary was feeling when she wrote the letter and how she adores her work on the Jurassic Coast’.

To support the quest to bring this letter ‘home’ to Lyme Regis please visit our Crowdfuding page.

Mary Anning with her dog, Tray. Circa 1840 with Golden Cap in the background.

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