Sea Dragons of Street – Fossil Exhibition

Back by popular demand!

Following on from the amazing success of the 2017 exhibition of this remarkable collection of fossilised ichthyosaurs, the Alfred Gillett Trust are holding TWO more free pop-up exhibition of fossilised ichthyosaurs found in Street. From 19-24 February and 29 October-3 November 2018, the public can view the fossils and learn about how they were found and what they tell us about the local environment.

19 large ichthyosaur fossils will be on display, as well a selection of smaller fossils found in the local area. Known as ‘sea dragons’, ichthyosaurs were dolphin-like marine reptiles which swam in the warm seas which covered Somerset around 200 million years ago. Street is known internationally for the quality and quantity of the fossils found in the local blue lias rock.

The fossils were found in local quarries in the 19th century by Alfred Gillett, a cousin of the founders of Clarks the shoemakers. Clark family members were also interested in the fossils which were being discovered in the area, and this impressive collection gradually developed. First displayed in Glastonbury Town Hall in 1880, the fossils were soon moved into a purpose-built Geological Museum in Crispin Hall in Street, which was opened in 1887.

Noted geologists and academics visited the collection to study them, along with tourists and residents in the locality of Street. Such was the importance of the collection and the affection held for the fossils in the area that the newly formed Street Urban District Council chose the ichthyosaur as their symbol in 1894. It is still used today by local societies and associations.

Essential Details

The exhibition will be open to the public from Monday 19 to Saturday 24 February 2017 from 10 am to 5 pm.

Entrance is free, but donations towards the care and future display of the fossils would be gratefully received.

For more details contact us or ring the Alfred Gillett Trust 01458 444060.