World famous dinosaur 'Dippy' opens to the public in Rochdale

Date published: 10 February 2020

Thousands of Oldham school children are expected to visit The Natural History Museum's famous dinosaur 'Dippy', which goes on show in Rochdale from today. 

A jam packed programme of roarsome dinosaur inspired activities, to coincide with Dippy's visit has been planned for children and families, until June. 

Dippy, left the London museum for the first time in 2017, to embark on a national tour and Rochdale has been selected as his only North West stop. 

Rochdale,  will play host to the famous dinosaur at Number One Riverside with an accompanying exhibition at Touchstones Rochdale. It’s free to see both exhibitions. 

More than 20 events and activities will be on offer throughout Dippy’s stay. Highlights include a dino lego build, which will see LEGO artist Warren Elsmore come to Number One Riverside to build a giant Diplodocus out of lego bricks, with the help of children and families.

Dippy on Tour: A Natural History Adventure, is being brought to Number One Riverside and visitors across the UK by the Natural History Museum in partnership with the Garfield Weston Foundation, and supported by Dell EMC and Williams & Hill. 

And the council and Link4Life, who are organising Dippy’s stay in Rochdale, are determined to make it an experience to remember, with the accompanying events programme featuring everything from a giant Diplodocus lego build to a dino inspired Halle orchestra performance. 

The Halle Dinosaurumpus family concert will see the world famous orchestra perform at Middleton Arena with dinosaur explorer Tomas O’Redmond in a special show. 

Over at Touchstones Rochdale, visitors can explore an exciting and ambitious Dippy Exhibition which will be filled with interactives and hands on displays.

There will be an opportunity to learn more about the Diplodocus and other dinosaurs and get up close to some fossilised bones including teeth, eggs and even dinosaur poo in the dinosaur gallery. 

In the swampland gallery, people will travel back in time to see what Rochdale would have been like 300 million years ago, before heading to the ‘Our Changing Planet’ gallery to look at how we can all work together to make a difference to protect the future of our planet. 

And children can get even more hands on with an opportunity to meet mini beasts like spiders and scorpions at a special session at Touchstones Rochdale, one of many activities which will take place there during his stay. 

Those who prefer getting active can get involved energetic pursuits like the Dino Dash at Rochdale Leisure Centre and building boats on Hollingworth Lake. 

The borough’s 17 libraries are also getting in on the dinosaur act, with events including Ahhhhh Dinosaur! – a fun and interactive poetry show by award winning poet Dominic Berry from CBeebies. 

Councillor Janet Emsley, cabinet member for culture, neighbourhoods and community at Rochdale Borough Council, with responsibility for Link4Life, said: “We want everyone’s visit to see Dippy to be just the start of their journey to lots more natural history adventures.

"That’s why we’ve put on a huge range of fantastic events to create a festival atmosphere which will keep visitors entertained for the duration of his stay and hopefully spark a lifelong love of the natural world in our young people.” 

Dippy on Tour has proved a record breaker, with over 1.5m people visiting the much-loved dinosaur at his tour stops so far; Dorset, Birmingham, Belfast, Glasgow, Newcastle and Cardiff. Rochdale will be the penultimate stop, before the tour finishes at Norwich Cathedral in October 2020. 

A 16 page guide to Dippy events in Rochdale will be distributed in the next few weeks at family and arts venues across the North West, as well as Rochdale’s official Dippy venues, Number One Riverside and Touchstones Rochdale. 

All events and activities, and booking information, can also be found at: 


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