Dinosaur teeth, tails and toes are at risk in Crystal Palace Park, Historic England has warned, with cracks appearing in the bodies of its 166-year-old Grade I-listed dinosaur statues.
No-one’s yet sure why the reptiles are fracturing, but it’s suggested that shifting ground on the Park’s artificial islands and changing water levels in the surrounding lake might be to blame. Eagle-eyed spotters may have noticed that the hylaeosaurus has a broken tail.
The statues, built between 1852 and 1855, had conservation work done in 2016-17. But given the new damage, Historic England has called for a survey to get to the bottom of the problem and find a more long-term solution that could save these south-east London icons.
In 2018, a local charity successfully crowdfunded £70,000 to build a bridge across to the islands so visitors can see the sculptures up close. Let’s hope the historians can save them in time for its installation.
Dippy for a diplodocus? Explore nine days out in London for the dinosaur-mad