Get in touch

Meet the Team Behind Mary Anning Rocks

Evie Swire

I was ten years old when I started helping my mum with this project, and I'm now 17. I was born in a village just outside Dorchester, and I am studying at college. I have learned a lot through this campaign, but mainly how long things can take and never to give up. 

Getting Mary her statue has been a battle, but I'm so happy and proud to see her now standing in her forever spot in Lyme Regis, where no one will ever forget her again. 

Anya Pearson

Mary Anning is such an inspirational woman. She achieved so many things from an early age and from a baseline of poverty, not privilege. As a working-class woman of Dorset who changed the way we view the world today, it was vital to me to celebrate her permanently in the town of her birth, Lyme Regis.

We must build positive and empowering female role models for all our children to look up to. Visualise for them that gender and class should never be a barrier to who or what you want to be in life. 

Welcome home, Mary.

Esther Yarnold

I'm a huge fan of Mary’s work and I am excited to be able to donate some of my time to work on this project; I will be helping out with design and marketing work, as well as consulting on the learning legacy that the project wishes to establish. A huge thank you to Evie Swire for inspiring and instigating such a wonderful project. 

As well as working as a lecturer and academic, I also undertake freelance design work and currently live in a small village in North Dorset with my rescue dog.

Brandon Lennon

My name is Brandon Lennon, and I’m a professional Fossil Collector from Lyme Regis. I started preparing and selling fossils in the early 1980s. This was from our family-owned shop called Lennon`s, which was originally set up by my parents. I now sell to Museums and other shops around the UK from our lapidary workshop.

I have taught in schools in Cambridge, London and the Dorset area as a STEM ambassador, and I provide schools with practical lessons and talks on the science of geology. As well as selling fossils, I have for the past 30 years been doing fossil walks along the Jurassic coast. 

Mike Harrison

I am an avid fossil hunter with over 25 years worth of experience, specialising in fossilised marine animals from Charmouth and Lyme Regis. I pretty much spend most of my time on the beaches looking for treasures that wash out from the cliffs, exactly like Mary did over 200 hundred years ago.

One of my most amazing finds was after spending nearly two years searching for the parts of a skull that belonged to a large Ichthyosaur, dubbed the ‘King of The Jurassic Sea’. 

Darrell Wakelam

Hi, my name is Darrell and I’m a professional artist based in Lyme Regis. As part of my work as an artist, I travel far and wide delivering art workshops for children and young people usually comprising of 3D models, masks, and sculptures. 

I’m originally from the West Midlands but moved to Dorset fifteen years ago to set up my own business. The reason I headed for Lyme Regis was based partly on a childhood love of ‘Natural History’ and a desire to explore my passion through the skills and techniques I had acquired as an artist. 

Michael Jeffries

Later in life, I became interested in fossils when a friend gave me an ammonite as a birthday gift. Ammonites look so beautiful, and studying the fossil’s body composition closely made me wonder about the functionalities of its design, the kind of environment it must have lived in, and the other “alien” life forms we don’t usually see today.

It made me more aware of the cliffs around Lyme Regis, where I lived and how big our world is. It forced me to contemplate deep time: how different the world must have been then and how it has changed so much since.  

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