June 29, 2017, by Shirlene Campbell Ritchie

Behind the scenes

In the run-up to the fascinating Dinosaur of China exhibition, see how the team from China and staff at Wollaton Hall got the fossils ready to go on display for the grand opening on 1st July.

It’s set to be a huge hit this summer and finally, the fossils which have the starring role in the Dinosaurs of China exhibition, have invaded Nottingham!

Work began in earnest in as fossil preparation technicians from the (IVPP) of China, along with staff at Wollaton Hall unpacked the crates which housed the precious cargo.

IVPP technicians check a crate containing a ceaudipteryx

Each crate was numbered and every layer of fossils housed within, was photographed. Then the team began with a quality control check.

IVPP technicians examined the quality of the bones and once they determined everything was in order, the baton was passed to Dr Adam Smith, the curator of Wollaton Hall. He then did the same and signed off the process.

Dr Adam Smith inspects a fossil

From there, the real fossils were moved into a secure room and kept under lock and key temporarily as it enabled the team to ensure their safety during installation. When everything was agreed upon and there were no further details to iron out, the building work got underway.

The process started with the biggest exhibits which included the spectacular Gigantoraptor – the largest feathered dinosaur in the world, the Sinraptor and Mamenchisaurus, which is the same height as three double decker buses – the latter took three days to build!

The Gigantoraptor takes shape


It is said that the Lufengosaurus was the first dinosaur to ever be assembled and mounted for display in China – here it is being set up in Wollaton Hall!









Mamenchisaurus had a remarkably long neck but despite its size, it was a herbivore


The smaller ones were easily placed alongside the relevant information panel. Once the biggest exhibits were completed, work began on the smaller ones. These included genuine fossils of many feathered dinosaurs including Sinosauropteryx and Microraptor. The smaller ones were easily placed alongside the relevant information panel.


Fu Shubing, an IVPP technician, places a microraptor type specimen in a secure case

When you visit the exhibition, you’ll see that each hall has a story and every hall plays a role in the whole narrative or message.

Hurrah to the team that put it all together!

So prepare to be amazed by some of the largest dinosaur skeletons in existence, some of which have never been seen before outside of Asia. Dinosaur fans will definitely want to make the most of this once-in-a-lifetime chance to check them out.


Dinosaurs of China

Dinosaurs of China is a one-time only world exclusive exhibition of dinosaurs coming to Europe for the first time.

Wollaton Hall, Nottingham, will host the main exhibition, with a complementary exhibition at Lakeside Arts, running from 1 July – 29 October 2017.

The exhibition will bring to life the story of how dinosaurs evolved into the birds that live alongside us today.

Book your tickets online now! 

Adults: £7

Child: £5

Family Ticket: £20

All tickets are subject to an additional 10% booking fee. Under 5’s visit for free. Carers free.

Posted in EngineeringResearch news