After sailing across the Irish Sea Dippy, the Natural History Museum London’s famous diplodocus, has arrived at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow.
The awe-inspiring 292 bone structure is being delicately unpacked by a team of specialists who are tasked with piecing together the iconic dinosaur cast.
In a Dippy on Tour first, Scottish audiences can watch the transformation from giant jigsaw to an impressive 21.3 metre long diplodocus take shape from the balcony in Kelvingrove Museum.
Dippy on Tour: A Natural History Adventure, which opens to the public on Tuesday 22 January, is being brought to Kelvingrove Museum and visitors across the UK by the Natural History Museum, London in partnership with the Garfield Weston Foundation, and supported by Dell EMC and Williams & Hill.
Dippy was transported to Scotland in 16 bespoke crates, each carefully packed with the precious cargo. Natural History Museum conservator Lorraine Cornish, together with a small team of conservators and technicians from the museum, were emptying the final boxes as assembly of the giant dinosaur neared completion.
The Natural History Museum’s Head of Conservation, Lorraine Cornish said: ‘As Dippy on Tour approaches the half-way point, having proved a huge success at the first three destinations, it seems very fitting that the next stop is a homecoming of sorts.
‘The Scottish leg of the tour, where the creation of the NHM Dippy cast was first discussed, is the perfect destination to reflect on the many people Dippy has so far inspired to explore their own natural world. We hope the visitors to Dippy in Glasgow will be equally enthralled by this Jurassic ambassador’.
As the UK tour hits the half-way point, the iconic dinosaur will be in Glasgow until 6 May and is free to visit. Before the tour, which has already delighted record-breaking numbers of visitors at three previous venues across the UK, Dippy had never been on public display outside of London.
Kelvingrove Museum is the only Scottish destination on the tour.
Chair of Glasgow Life, Councillor David McDonald, said: ‘Dippy is here. The excitement is palpable. Like thousands of other visitors I’m relishing the unique opportunity to see this impressive creature take shape before my eyes.
‘It’s a pleasure to watch the skilled team from Natural History Museum bring Dippy to life in Glasgow. We look forward to welcoming his many adoring fans to Kelvingrove Museum over the coming months.’
Diplodocus carnegii is named after Andrew Carnegie, the Scottish-American steel magnate and philanthropist who financed its excavation in Wyoming, USA in 1899.
It was to become the centrepiece of The Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh. King Edward VII saw a sketch of the dinosaur while visiting Andrew Carnegie at his Scottish castle, Skibo and began a conversation that resulted in the commission of a replica cast.
Dippy, as he became known, was unveiled at the Natural History Museum in 1905, where he remained one of the most popular exhibits until preparations began for Dippy on Tour in 2017.
Dippy on Tour is on a mission to inspire five million natural history adventures and encourage families to explore nature on their doorstep. Glasgow Museums will use Dippy’s visit, together with a supporting public and schools programme, to showcase the city’s natural history collection and stunning local natural habitats.
For more information visit www.glasgowmuseums.com.