Lyme Regis Fossils
Lyme Regis is famous for its geology, fossils and its unparalleled role in the birth of the earth sciences. The local blue lias clay found to the east and west contains the remarkable fossil remains of sea creatures from the Jurassic seas of 180 million years ago.
It was on these beaches that one of Lyme's most famous citizens, Mary Anning (1799-1847), discovered the first complete ichthyosaur to be found in England, and she was just twelve years old at the time. Through her hard labour and scientific approach to recording her discoveries, Mary established herself as a renowned palaeontologist, and working with contemporaries Buckland, Conybeare and Henry de la Beche, played a pioneering role in developing our understanding of the earth.
Safety and The Fossil Code
Be safe while you're on the beach, walking along the coast path or collecting fossils. Read more …
"Always consult tide tables before collecting. It is advisable that you go collecting on a falling tide. A particular hazard is the beach immediately east of Lyme Regis, which is cut off shortly after low tide. For further advise please contact the Lyme Regis Tourist Information Centre on 01297 442138."
In May 2010, Sir David Attenborough is filming on Monmouth Beach in a new 3D film focusing on pterosaurs. The film "Flying Monsters" is an Atlantic Production in cooperation with Sky TV.
The remains of complete ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs and other incredible sea creatures are found to this day by people of all ages. The spiral shaped ammonite (a long extinct member of the mollusc family, looking a bit like a nautilus) is more common, and with patience and a bit of luck you'll be able to find your own fossil in the rock pools or amongst the shingle. You can also find fool’s gold (iron pyrites), ammonites and bullet shaped belemnites or trace ammonites in the large boulders - those on Monmouth Beach to the West of Lyme and seen at low tides are particularly impressive, with some being one metre across.