Attractions industry news

12 Oct 2017

Sir Tim Smit heads up new project as Jurassica and Memo join forces

The long-awaited Jurassica project is taking a new path towards realisation, joining forces with biodiversity project Memo to create a single visitor experience.

Sir Tim Smit is behind the reimagined venture, named 'The Journey', with the Eden Project creator coming onboard to steer the development into this new phase.

The £80m (US$105.6m, €89.2m) Jurassica – a subterranean geological park on the Isle of Portland, Dorset – was the brainchild of Michael Hanlon, who died from a heart attack in February last year. Following his death, the project’s board, which had backing from Smit and Sir David Attenborough, made a unanimous decision to press forward, promising to bring Hanlon’s “thrilling vision” for the prehistoric attraction to life.

Memo – the Mass Extinction Memorial Observatory – was a proposed 'living monument', designed to raise awareness of 17,000 global species under threat from extinction. The landmark, also in Dorset, would have been made of Portland stone blocks, each carved to depict the 850 species lost since 1662, when the last dodo was seen.

The Journey was originally envisaged as a £30m (US$39.6m, €33.5m) project designed as a monument to extinction. However, it has been downsized and will now form a £16m (US$21.1m, €17.8m) biodiversity scheme in the disused Albion Stone mines, which will feature an underground Jurassic rainforest.

“The ambition for us all is to create something genuinely world class in the mines beneath Portland to present biodiversity, evolution and the art of seeing the world anew in the most theatrical and possibly the most appropriate setting on earth, the Jurassic Coast,” said Smit. “It is our collective ambition too that this should be the catalyst to the creation of educational facilities that will, in turn, incubate opportunities for the island for years to come.”

Smit added that more details about the project would be revealed before the end of the year, adding that funds have already been secured to develop a planning application.

As a result of the merger, the Jurassica Trust will dissolve, with its project co-ordinator Alison Smith joining the team from Memo. All of Jurassica's assets have now been transferred to The Journey. The new vision for the attraction is predicted to attract 325,000 visitors a year, creating 79 full-time positions.

“We have always known our futures lay together in some form,” said Tracey Brown, chair of trustees for Jurassica.

“In the past year, we have been developing our respective projects with gathering speed. The opportunity created by this momentum, together with the pressure of two sites in Portland, makes a strong case for us to join together now.

“The combination of our visions will be greater than the sum of their parts, making this into one of the UK’s most exciting projects to be undertaken since the turn of the millennium.”

<< Back

News powered by attractionsmanagement.com

HLF considers change to funding methods

The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) is changing the way it hands out finances for British projects, with the organisation considering the introduction of loans and corporate funding objectives starting next year. [more...]

Liverpool creates action plan as Unesco threatens removal of historic city from World Heritage list

In a bid to protect its World Heritage status, the City of Liverpool and Historic England have drawn up a heritage action plan, created to navigate the threat posed by a proposed development of the city’s waterfront, which could see it struck from the Unesco register. [more...]

Stirling Prize-winning Hastings Pier up for sale

The RIBA Stirling Prize-winning Hastings Pier, designed by architecture studio dRMM, has been put up for sale. [more...]

Thorpe Park announces plans for world first Walking Dead rollercoaster

After bringing global IP The Walking Dead to its popular Fright Night events last October, Thorpe Park has upped the ante yet again, utilising the popular brand as part of a world-first rollercoaster currently under development at the British theme park and resort. [more...]

Ecsite: How shopping malls can drive attendance in science centres

Ecsite – the European Network of Science Centers and Museums – has looked at how shopping centres and retail areas can be used to drive attendance at science centres, specifically through tailored edutainment experiences. [more...]

UK's longest treetop walkway wins planning permission

Architects Cullinan Studio and multidisciplinary firm Arup have received planning permission for the UK’s longest aerial walkway: a 400m-long (1,312ft) ribbon “floating through the treetops” of the Conkers visitor attraction in Leicestershire. [more...]

In brief:

Leisure Opportunities is doing an apprenticeship survey – take part here. #Apprentice #Apprenticeships #Apprentices [more...]
Esme Ward becomes first female director of Manchester Museum @McrMuseum @WhitworthArt @ward_esme [more...]
'Lates' events generate £10m a year for British museums and galleries @Culture24 @MuseumsAtNight [more...]
Bear Grylls plans to 'bring adventure to the millions' with new survival attraction @BearGrylls [more...]
Madison Square Garden Company reveal plans for London Sphere – 'the future of live entertainment' @MSGLondon @MayorofLondon [more...]
Public feedback sought for 'iconic' Old Street gateway designs [more...]
'A meeting of material and historical inspirations': Frida Escobedo to design 2018 Serpentine Pavilion @SerpentineUK @dadjaye [more...]
Increase in dementia-friendly tourist attractions could boost Scottish tourism [more...]
Southwest Wales holiday resort gets green light for £7m SkyDome [more...]
More news from attractionsmanagement.com>>
<< Back