What’s On 2017-09-13T11:44:12+00:00

What’s On

Follow in the footsteps of our prehistoric friends and join us for a weekend of theatre performance and Dino Walks to talks from Geology experts and fossil workshops.

Entry to the Festival is free.

Advance tickets for the Dino Walks and Rock Pooling can be purchased here. During the Festival, tickets can be purchased from the Rotunda welcome desk.

All events and activities are FREE except where stated.
Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult.

The Rotunda Museum

One of the world’s first purpose-built museums, this unique circular building opened in 1829 and was built to a design suggested by William ‘Strata’ Smith, known as the father of English Geology. Experts will be on hand to help you explore the fossils, flints, skeletons and skulls.

Visit The Rotunda’s website
Rotunda Museum - part of Yorkshire Fossil Festival
Rock Pooling

Saturday & Sunday 1.30pm (NEW TIME) . Limited places so book early. Tel: 01723 353665
£3 adults, £2 children

Meet at The Rotunda

Set off on a rock pooling adventure to find, identify and learn about the sea creatures that live along Scarborough’s shoreline.

Rock-pooling at the Yorkshire Fossil Festival in Scarborough
Dinosaur Footprint Walk

Saturday & Sunday 12 noon. Limited places so book early. Tel: 01723 353 665.
£3 adults, £2 children 

Meet outside Scarborough Spa

Take an expert-led walk in the footprints left by the prehistoric creatures that roamed the Yorkshire Coast when Scarborough was a giant Jurassic rock pool.

A baby t-rex meets children at Yorkshire Fossil Festival
T.rex Dinosaur Walkabout

Town Centre, throughout Saturday & Sunday

Watch out for Scarborough’s very own ‘Rex’ marauding around The Rotunda!

A dinosaur walks around Scarborough for the Yorkshire Fossil Festival
Tree Stilt Walkers

Saturday & Sunday, 3 sessions each day, outside The Rotunda Museum between the exhibitor marquees and on the Spa Bridge.

These amazing giant tree-people will be striding around and towering over proceedings; be prepared for some ‘treemendous’ photo opportunities!

Tree stilt walkers set to appear at Yorkshire Fossil Festival
Soapbox Science

Saturday & Sunday, 4 sessions each day (5 – 10 mins) on The Spa Bridge.

Short talks by specialists and experts sharing their passion for science and geology.


The Rotunda – various times

Settle down to be entertained by Adrian Spendlow’s Fossil Folklore.

Displays and demonstrations

10am – 5pm, Saturday & Sunday

Rotunda Geology Group

Explore the Scarborough Museums Trust’s fossil handling collection, learn about local fossils and rocks, work out the geological jigsaws and puzzles and make an origami dinosaur to take home!

The North Yorkshire coastline
University of Leeds

The School of Earth and Environment will showcase their diverse and cutting-edge Palaeo-research; join in activities to learn about past climates, mass extinctions, fossil food webs and the world of micropalaeontology.

Staff from the University of Leeds at the Yorkshire Fossil Festival
The Palaeontological Association

Get hands-on with life in the seas 200 million years ago; attempt to become a fossil with the ‘Fossilisation Frenzy’ game; or make a fossil or miniature dinosaur footprint to take home. Witness Palaeoartist James McKay’s stunning paintings of imaginary prehistoric creatures or fossils.

An exhibition from the Palaeontological Association
University of Leicester

Find out how fossils are preserved and what some extinct animals liked to eat from specialist Palaeobiologists or get hands-on with 3D-printed representations of palaeontologists’ theories about the diets of fossilised organisms. Younger visitors can dig for the fossil teeth in the sand pit!

A member of the team from the University of Leicester at Yorkshire Fossil Festival
Whitby Museum

Drop by to learn more about Whitby Museum’s amazing collection of Jurassic fossils – all collected along the Yorkshire coast. Famous display includes giant reptiles, ammonites, bivalves, belemnites, plants and dinosaur footprints.

Two young boys explore Whitby Museum
York Museums Trust

The Museum’s fun, family-orientated gallery presents a world of weird and wonderful creatures that have lived on our planet over millions of years. Come and meet curators, enjoy handling objects from the vast collection and try out the children’s activities.

A display from the York Museums Trust
Yorkshire Geological Society

Visit the stand and watch rock polishing demonstrations, discover all about Yorkshire Geology and Fieldwork in their exhibition and understand why geologists have hammers. There’ll be fantastic demonstrations of fresh rock surfaces and fossils along bedding planes. PLUS, don’t miss the chance to have a go at using the diamond saw and vibrating pan polisher as you polish your own rock! Bring your own specimen along or pick one up at the stand and have a go!

The spectacular scenery of Yorkshire
Yorkshire Wildlife Trust

Drop by to find out more about the work of this local charity in taking care of over 100 nature reserves, protecting and conserving Yorkshire’s wild places and wildlife for the enjoyment of everyone.

A display from the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust
High Tide Publishing

See if you can identify some common Yorkshire fossils – and check out some popular guide-books focusing on Yorkshire’s beautiful landscapes, the geology and fossils of the area.

Beach Finds on the Yorkshire Coast
Natural History Museum

Learn about tectonic plates, volcanic rocks and eruptions; discover how to separate fossil facts from folklore and fiction; find out how Britain’s first geological map was made and delve into all things shark-related – including how to tell their size from their teeth.

A member of staff from the Natural History Museum at the Yorkshire Fossil Festival
Dinosaur Isle Museum

Encounter dinosaur bones and other fossils from the Cretaceous of the Isle of Wight. Handle real dinosaur bones and find out more about the richest dinosaur locality in Europe.

Dinosaur Isle Museum
Hidden Horizons

Scarborough based Hidden Horizons will be at the Festival with a range of local fossil displays, family activities, fossils and books for sale and information about their events all year round, including fossil hunts, stargazing, forest schools and more.

Yorkshire coastline
Museum of Natural History, Oxford University

To celebrate the 175th anniversary of the naming of Dinosauria by Richard Owen in 1842, come and experience all things dinosaur!

Museum of Natural History, University of Oxford
University of Hull

What lies beneath?

Examine the 300 million years of geological history beneath your feet and learn about climate change and life through the ages.

How has the geology of our region affected society through its industries? What does the future hold?

Plus, find out what chalk is made from close up – it’s more exciting than it sounds!

Sea lily ossicle under microscope:
Time Bites

Time Bites mixes great tasting chocolate with our unique and intricate designs of fossil creatures and dinosaurs to create an original brand of chocolates that will delight all ages of chocolate lovers. Our products recreate trilobites and ammonite fossils buttons in tasty milk, white and dark chocolate.

The trilobite, fearsome T.rex and unfortunate dodo feature in our milk chocolate lolly range and the beautiful Charnia (Ediacaran) and ammonite shapes are used in our fossil collection – a blend of chocolate and distinct flavours such as chilli, ginger and cardamon.

Time Bites chocolate
The Geological Society

Come and meet members of the Geological Society’s Yorkshire Regional Group, handle objects from our fossil collection and explore the Jurassic food chain by finding out ‘Who Ate the Ammonite?’