Horizon: Dippy and the Whale

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Horizon: Dippy and the Whale

Series 2017

Tue 26 Nov 11am - 12pm Eden
See Repeats
Tue 26 Nov, 2pm - 3pm Eden
Wed 27 Nov, 3am - 3:50am Eden


126 years ago a young female blue whale died after getting beached off the coast of Ireland. The bones of her skeleton, all 220 of them, found their way to the Natural History Museum in London, where they have recently been hung from the roof in the main entrance hall as the first thing visitors see when they walk in.

But hold on, what about the famous dinosaur skeleton that children have been enjoying in the hall for decades? Gone, banished – controversially dispatched around the country on tour because the museum wants to focus on the future and our duty of care to the natural world, rather than the past. Horizon’s cameras follow the painstaking process of hanging the magnificent whale in her new home.


Over the past two years, the staff of the Natural History Museum has undertaken a super-sized challenge - to take down its famous cast of a dinosaur skeleton in the entrance hall and replace it with an equally impressive skeleton of a blue whale - the largest animal to have lived. This documentary follows the teams of conservators and engineers as they take apart the diplodocus - known to staff and visitors as Dippy - bone by bone, ready for a countrywide tour and then get the whale ready to go on display - all without closing the museum to the public. Narrated by David Attenborough.

Cast & Crew

Narrator David Attenborough
Director Annie Mackinder
Series Editor Steve Crabtree
Documentary Science