Only 5% of recorded history includes women. Women have been erased from history and their stories need to be told.
This erasure of achievements came to light when 11 year old Evie asked to see Mary Anning’s statue, a great fossil hunter who was born in Lyme Regis, but there wasn’t one. She then started a campaign to get Mary a statue in her hometown. That is why I selected Lyme Regis as my site, to retell Mary Anning’s erased story and inspire young girls that they too can achieve great things in STEM.
The Mary Anning Centre is a museum that reflects on and retells Mary Anning’s story, whilst also looking towards the future with exciting and interactive STEM activities to engage children. These include a climbing wall through geological layers, a slide to the centre of the Earth, 3D printing lab, bring your own fossil and a Nobel Prize Wall to add your own photo to the winners list.
The Cavern is an experiential void through the centre of the museum that brings the fossil discoveries and Mary’s story to life. The dark textured walls are filled with fossils and sunlight casts shadows deep into the void.
The rock form of the museum is clad in local stone, Blue Lias. It sits above an excavated dig level, which becomes a fossil playground for visitors to explore. The lower levels shine as the copper cladding relates to the copper layers found in the Lyme Regis cliffs.
The wider site contains a funicular that takes visitors to a lookout point at the top of the SSSI cliffs and a pier that leads to a walk down to the seabed. This fun and exciting site brings learning out onto the street level and gets children excited about science.