THE Jurassic Coast Trust and Lyme Regis Museum have launched an ambitious fundraising appeal with the hope of raising £18,000 to purchase a rare letter by famous fossil hunter Mary Anning in just 24 hours.
The unpublished letter written by Lyme Regis’ most famous daughter, Mary Anning, went up for online auction with Sotheby’s last week and is expected to sell for about £12,000.
Dated February 15 1829, the famous fossil hunter sent the letter to her friend and collaborator, William Buckland, describing her latest discoveries on the Jurassic Coast, including a plesiosaur that is now in the Natural History Museum in London.
The auction closes tomorrow (Tuesday) with the latest bid standing at £10,000.
The Jurassic Coast Trust and Lyme Regis Museum – based on the site of Mary Anning’s former home – have now launched an online fundraising campaign with the hope of raising £18,000 to secure the rare letter.
They have just 24 hours to reach their target and “bring the letter home”.
Appealing to its supporters on social media, the Jurassic Coast Trust wrote: “The letter is of significant importance for the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site, offering a unique insight into the mind of Mary Anning.
“Mary opened the door for improved inclusion and engagement on the Jurassic Coast, inspiring future generations of geologists and palaeontologists who still walk in her footsteps along the beach of Lyme Regis today.”
So far, just over £900 has been raised towards the £18,000 target. You can support the appeal at https://justgiving.com/crowdfunding/mary-anning-letter-1829