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BEASTS UNLEASHED; OfftheBox WALKING WITH BEASTS: Herbert Art Gallery, Coventry REVEAL your inner cavemen and take a walk on the wild side. TV writer Marion McMullen heads back to the Stone Age as the BBC Walking With Beasts exhibition opens today in Coventry.

COMING face to face with a woolly rhino can be a startling and eye-opening experience. You certainly don't mess about with this horned prehistoric critter if you know what's good for you. The woolly one has just made himself at home in Coventry along with a couple of mammoths and a sabre-tooth tiger and they are settling down in the city for the next few months and offering lots of beastly fun. They are among the animal stars of the BBC Walking With Beasts exhibition which opens today at Coventry's awardwinning Herbert Art Gallery & Museum. It recreates the dangerous and breathtaking world of post-dinosaur Earth and offers fun for the whole family. Visitors can get up close and personal with the prehistoric beasties ... if they dare. There's also the chance to get friendly with a Neanderthal man and place yourself among roaming herds using the technical wizardry of the blue screen area. Since the dinosaurs died out 65 million years ago the planet has been dominated by a diverse range of mammals. The BBC brought a number of them back to life by using cutting-edge technology created for the Walking With Dinosaurs series.

The Coventry exhibition lifts the lid on the technology behind the TV series and examines the fantastic creatures from the past and the times in which they lived. Exhibition officer Dominic Bubb says: "As a museum we obviously showcase natural history, but Walking With Beasts brings a whole new level to exploring the past. "With our natural history collections visitors have always had the chance to explore the natural world, but now they get to see so much more thanks to this incredible exhibition." Walking With Beasts recreates the world of the sabre-toothed tiger and some of the most bizarre and frightening creatures ever to have walked the Earth. The era featured the icy plains of the mastodon, dark forests ravaged by giant ants and deserts dominated by 15 tonne indricotheres. Tim Haines's world-famous natural history team brought alive the spectacular landscape on TV using the latest computer graphics. They brought viewers a world inhabited by cat-sized horses and rhino-sized carnivorous pigs, gigantic terror birds and the very first humans. Sally Johnson, of The Herbert, says: "This is something new for us and Coventry and we are hoping it will be really popular. Not many places have their own woolly rhino and two mammoths on site." Walking With Beasts runs until October 30. Tickets cost pounds 4.95 for adults, pounds 3.95 for children over five and are free for under fives. Family tickets cost pounds 14. Concessions apply. Tickets can booked from the Herbert reception or receive a 10 per cent discount by booking online at www.theherbert.org
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jul 2, 2011
Words:454
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