Vernon Systems, represented by UK Systems Consultant Alex von der Becke, were trade exhibitors at the recent NatSCA (Natural Sciences Collections Association) Conference held at Leeds City Museum on the 26-27 April 2018.
Day one of the varied and interesting programme included a fascinating talk by Adam Stuart Smith of Nottingham City Museums & Galleries, effectively illustrated with time-lapse photography, of the process involved in installing the tallest dinosaur ever displayed in the UK.
On a similar theme of displaying large specimens, Simon Jackson of Tullie House spoke about the process of turning the beached and rotting carcase of a 12 metre fin whale, Driggsby, into a dramatic hanging display at Tullie House.
Day two included a talk highlighting some of the challenges faced by the sector, as Roz Bonnet presented sobering statistics from the SWANS (South West Area Natural Sciences) Collections Project. These included the revelation that only 7% of museum staff had some basic training in working with natural science collections. Clearly collections care in this specialised field is a pressing training need.
The conference concluded with a fascinating ‘behind the scenes’ tour of the museum store at the Leeds Discovery Centre, with particular highlights for Alex being creepy ‘half skeleton’ taxidermy and an alarming collection of spiders and scorpions found in Leeds supermarket produce.