Marja-Leena Rathje
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Ichthyosaur skull, Lyme Regis Museum

Some readers may recall a post I wrote about a book which I enjoyed reading while on vacation last spring at our favourite spot on the west coast of Vancouver Island. Yesterday, in my rounds of blog visits, I was excited to see Kris's Archaeology Blog featuring a review of that same book: Remarkable Creatures. She has included some interesting links to explore, of which I particularly enjoyed the BBC Audio slideshow: Jurassic woman. Mary Anning's fossil discoveries 200 years ago near Lyme Regis are being celebrated by the Royal Society, The Natural History Museum and the town's museum. I hope you will enjoy the slides and links as much as I did. This all makes me want to reread the book and the next time we visit England, to visit Lyme Regis, home of this remarkable woman!

Marja-Leena | 22/11/2010 | 10 comments
themes: Books, History


Marja-Leena, indeed I'm sure you would enjoy Lyme Regis and find things there that I probably missed. I spent a short holiday there a few years ago and took some photos which are in the PHOTOS section of my website. It's very much an old-fashioned English seaside town, full of character and history. Apart from the fossils, it's also known for that famous pier where 'The French Lieutenant's Woman' stood (in the film of the book) gazing sadly out to sea. The author, whose name escapes me at this moment, lived in Lyme Regis.

The author's name is John Fowles and he's closely associated with Lyme Regis.

My photos of the place are here:

Natalie, how interesting that you've been there, your photos are lovely. And I remember that movie! John Fowles' name was right up there with Jane Austen's on the Lyme Regis site but it didn't ring a bell until you mentioned it, thanks! Maybe we'll get there next year?

Hi Marja-Leena,

I have been to Lyme Regis many times, during the summer holidays, our children loved to collect the fossils, many just lying on the beach. We would always have an amazing day, rain or shine 'treasure hunting'....happy days.

It is a great place to visit but avoid the summer holidays if you can, it gets very busy.

Lovely post, it brought back happy memories.

Thank you.

~ Julie

Julie, those family holidays sound just lovely, thanks for sharing! Perhaps we'll take our granddaughters there, though it's far from where they now live in Sussex.

I feel as if I practically grew up in Lyme Regis! We had a funny old peppermint green caravan, nicknamed 'Lucy's Lodge' parked along the coast at Charmouth, and my brother and I spent the whole summer there in the charge of various family members when we were small. It used to seem as if you could just find fossils lying about, but then it got harder, but I think it depends on what the weather's like, and if there have been any cliff falls lately. There's a kind of permanent pavement of ammonites on one part of the beach, further west of the Cobb ( the stone pier from which Louisa Musgrove fell in 'Persuasion'!) and of course shops selling imported, ready polished fossils.

Later, Tom and I used to go back there regularly; it's one of the places I think I can really say I miss in the UK. It probably does get busy in the school hols, but it's never really noisy or tacky like a lot of British seaside, as it prides itself on being quiet and not over-developed.

Lucy, what lovely memories of the place, such that I want to go there even more, maybe even find a fossil. Was the Museum there in those days and did you visit it?

lucy, that sounds like a happy version of a paddy clarke book!

oh yes, take the grandchildren next year. *wave* have a nice time! if we can find a children's book about it in advance, no doubt they would spend the time immersed in some kind of narrative. x

Elisa, maybe we could all go there together for a few days? Let me know if you find a book....