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  • Grant Museum starts major project to preserve rarest skeleton in the world

    By Jack Ashby, on 24 November 2014

    This infant chimpanzee  skeleton will be conserved  as part of  Bone Idols

    This infant chimpanzee skeleton
    will be conserved as part of Bone Idols

    Something very exciting has started here at the Grant. We are undertaking a major project to protect 39 of our rarest and most significant skeletons, some which have been on display in the Museum for 180 years. To help achieve this, we launching our first ever public fundraising campaign – aiming to raise £15,000 to support the costs of this crucial work.

    Preserving the rarest skeleton in the world

    The specimens include the rarest skeleton in the world: the extinct quagga – an unusual half-striped zebra from South Africa. It is the only mounted quagga skeleton in the UK, and no more than seven quagga skeletons survive globally. The project involves completely dismantling and chemically cleaning the irreplaceable skeleton, and then remounting it on a new skeleton-friendly frame in a more anatomically correct position. The work is intended to secure the long-term preservation of the specimens.

    Protecting the uncollectable

    The quagga will be the focus and most involved element of Bone Idols: Protecting our iconic skeletons, a major project of conservation across the Museum’s displays. Interventions will range from deep cleaning bones, repairing damaged elements and re-casing specimens through to remounting huge skeletons. (more…)

    Supporting conservation as an individual with no money

    By Emma-Louise Nicholls, on 29 May 2013

    In today’s world I find we are surrounded by charity adverts ready to make us feel bad for not immediately delving into our wallets for our credit cards. I’m fairly certain that the vast majority of people would make the world a better place (in the traditional sense) if they could, but in today’s economic climate (man that phrase is getting old), the weight of the world’s problems can feel like too much to bear but are all too easy to ignore. Fear not, I have a plan…

    Let’s say that after you have budgeted for the essentials each month; rent, electricity, dinosaur lego, wifi, food; you decide that you can commit £2 a month to saving the world one species at a time. How and where will you spend said precious mound of pennies? (more…)

    Paying the piper

    By Rachael Sparks, on 8 August 2012

    The first objects in the Institute of Archaeology’s Collections came from British Mandate Palestine, donated by the famous Egyptologist, Flinders Petrie.

    Petrie Exhibiting material from Tell Fara in London

    What was an Egyptologist doing digging in Palestine? Pretending to his supporters that he was still working in Egypt, for one. Exhausted by his endless confrontations with the Egyptian authorities, Petrie took off for the region near modern-day Gaza at the sprightly age of 73. He told his supporters he was just going to work in ‘Egypt over the border’, and promptly spent the rest of his career doing just that. (more…)