What’s on : Lectures

“Discovering Dinosaurs in Britain: the original Dinomania!”

13 Mar 2018
Start time
7:30 PM
Tempest Anderson Hall
Dean Lomax, Palaeontologist

Event Information

“Discovering Dinosaurs in Britain:The original Dinomania!” with Dean Lomax, Palaeontologist

Palaeontologist and author Dean Lomax takes us on a journey back to the amazing British dinosaur finds that sparked the original dinomania. From the ‘invention’ of dinosaurs to the great granddad of T. rex, he reveals the most incredible dinosaur discoveries, including the recent identification of new species and some incredibly rare finds.

A joint lecture with York Museums Trust for British Science Week

Member’s report

The name ‘dinosaur’ (meaning terrible lizard) was coined by a British scientist, Richard Owen, in 1842, although fossils had been discovered world-wide for millennia before. The first dinosaur discovery ever documented, a thigh bone thought to be from one of the largest, was found in a quarry near Chipping Norton in 1677. Of particular interest to the YPS audience was the involvement of William Buckland (who had proved the Kirkdale cave to have been a hyena den). He wrote the first full account of this fossil which he named Megalosaurus (great lizard). The identification and first description of Stegosaurus remains discovered near Swindon was also a British first. There are some 1450 different species of dinosaur, but remains of only 60 have been discovered in the British Isles. Those were the first to be named, so dinosaurs are seen as something of a British invention.

While the majority of and earliest dinosaur remains have been found in South Wales, there is evidence of substantial numbers having existed in Yorkshire.  However, these are identified mainly by fossilised foot prints.  Studies continue towards identifying individual species from the prints.

Dinosaurs are not quite extinct. As Dean pointed out, most, if not all birds are in fact directly related to dinosaurs.

Ken Hutson