Natural History Museum

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Rare bat found in shop goes to Natural History Museum

Barbastelle bat
Trustees of the Natural History Museum London

A rare bat found in a shop has become the first of its kind to be added to the Natural History Museum's collection in 20 years.

The live barbastelle bat was discovered under a clothing rail in retailers Joules in Salisbury, Wiltshire.

It was taken to a vet but died within hours and was later identified after a local bat group was contacted.

Steph West, from the museum, said the animal was a "valuable specimen" and "one of our rarest mammals".

The unusual shop visitor, named Joules by the London museum, is thought to have been hiding in a coat sleeve before it was spotted by staff member Naomi Young crawling out from under a clothes rail last week.

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Dippy the dinosaur boosts museums' income in UK-tour

Dippy the dinosaur
PA Media
The first stop of Dippy's UK tour was Dorset County Museum in Dorchester

He is not just a pretty face - Dippy the dinosaur has been a money-spinner on its UK tour.

The 26-metre-long dinosaur skeleton cast, which was on show at the Natural History Museum for almost 40 years, is travelling around the country.

And a report demonstrates the extent of Dippy's money-making powers.

Dippy kicked off its tour last year at the Dorset County Museum.

According to the National Museums Partnership Report, the local area "benefited from £2.2m of visitor spend as a result of Dippy on Tour".

And the museum saw an almost tenfold boost in its income, up from £38,293 to £372,013, its own report shows.

Shop spend, where knitted dinosaurs and dinosaur Monopoly were on sale, enjoyed an even bigger year-on-year increase, from £9,531 to £188,152.

Dippy is on a two-year tour of Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and five regions across England.

The National Museums Partnership Report says UK museums loaned nearly 450,000 objects across the globe last year.

Nearly 70,000 objects from UK national collections were on display in cultural venues around the world in 2018.

The report, published by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, comes as UK museums face increasing demands for objects to be returned to their original countries.

Arts minister Rebecca Pow said: "I'm delighted to see that by loaning objects to local, regional and international galleries, last year more than 33 million extra people got to enjoy and engage with treasures from our national collection. It's UK soft power at its best, and benefits all those involved in these innovative partnerships."

Watch: From London to the far side of the Moon

A giant replica of the Moon that has been displayed all over the world has made its way to the Natural History Museum in London.

The model, designed by artist Luke Jerram, is six metres (19.7ft) in diameter and shows detailed Nasa images of the lunar surface.

It has been circling the globe since 2016, lighting up spaces from Bilbao to Beijing.

Dippy the diplodocus visits Newcastle

It's been an iconic feature of London's Natural History Museum for more than a century and now it's in Newcastle.

Dippy, the plaster cast skeleton of a Diplodocus, is touring the UK and its latest stop-off is the Great North Museum: Hancock.

Created using fossilised bones of one of the largest animals that ever lived, Dippy is being carefully assembled ahead of its unveiling to the public on Saturday.

It will be on show in the museum until October.

Dippy Diplodocus
Natural History Museum via PA