A collection of more than one million British insects, which is held at the Oxford Natural History Museum, is set for a revamp.
The BBC revealed that £1.3 million will be spent on a scheme that’s designed to safeguard the museum’s collections, create new gallery spaces and hire new staff.
£700,000 of that figure is coming from the National Lottery Heritage Fund. In addition to rehousing the vast insect collection, the museum is also setting up an outreach programme with local schools to show some of the insects to youngsters.
Paul Smith, the museum’s director, told the news provider that it’s an ambitious project, and one that will make the collections more accessible.
The Westwood Room, a pre-Raphaelite designed space will be restored to its condition from 1860 when it was originally constructed and alongside it will be the new British insect gallery. The displays here will focus on biodiversity and habitat loss.
Stuart Hobley, of the National Lottery Heritage Fund, commented: “The British Insect Collection is an incredibly valuable part of our natural heritage, charting the story of 150 years of British bugs and entomology.”
Work on the revamp at the museum is set to begin in September this year and will be completed by the end of 2021.
The insect collection isn’t the only thing of interest that’s housed in the museum though. It also boasts the Oxford Dodo, which is described as the most iconic specimen in its collection. In fact, it’s the only place in the world to have soft tissue remains from this large, flightless bird.
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