Partnership Event: Bristol Alumni Network: The Spring Showcase 2022

18 March 2022, 7.00 PM - 19 March 2022, 9.00 PM


The Bristol Alumni Network presents The Spring Showcase 2022. Following the success of the inaugural event last year, this series of digital events returns from Friday 18 to Saturday 19 March 2022 and this year has a dinosaur theme!

In this year's showcase, you can learn how artists bring dinosaurs back to life on screen, hear stories of cannibalism at a mysterious cave site in South Gloucestershire and show off your quizzing prowess in our ever-popular University Challenge competition.  Sign up your team of four via this form by Friday 4 March.

See the full events programme listed below, if you would like more information please email

Programme of events

Friday 18 March

Event TimeDescriptionLink

A celebration of Earth Sciences             

7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Join us to celebrate the many achievements of Earth Sciences at Bristol at an online evening receptionwhich will include the virtual launch of Professor Mike Benton’s OBE, FRS FRSE ground-breaking new book‘ Dinosaurs: New Visions of a Lost World.  Staff and students will come together with alumni to celebrate the department’s notablsuccesses. 

We will review some high points of the history of the Department of Geology and subsequent School of Earth Sciences and show some of the wonderful archival photographs of staff, students and especially fieldwork from former days. This marks the beginning of a new project, and we will be asking for all alumni to dig out their photos and send digitized versions for a more permanent, curated website. 



Saturday 19 March

Digging for dinosaurs

10:00 am -10:50

Calling all younger dinosaur enthusiasts! You are invited to a series of short sessions in which you will hear from dinosaur experts about the latest scientific discoveries, see examples of real fossils from the UK and get advice on how you might be able to discover them yourself near to home.

Bringing dinosaurs back to life 11:00 am – 12:30 pm

How do science and art work together to show us what dinosaurs looked like and how they moved? In this series of presentations, world-leading practitioners will take you through this process step-by-step.

Professor Mike Benton OBE, FRS FRSE of the University of Bristol led a team that identified the colour of dinosaurs for the first time in 2010, and he will introduce the science behind dinosaur biology, and how we have ‘seen’ dinosaurs over the years.

Then, world-beating paleoartist Bob Nicholls (Paleocreations) will demonstrate how he makes highly detailed reconstructions of dinosaurs using all the scientific information.

Tim Haines, BAFTA-award-winning maker of the 1999 BBC series Walking with Dinosaurs, ITV’s hit series Primeval and many more, will talk about how filmmakers have made dinosaurs move, and especially how the CGI revolution has brought these creatures to life on our screens.

Each talk will be approx. 20 minutes, followed by questions, so there is plenty of chance to engage.

Student Showcase 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

The Showcase event brings together a selection of subject-specific student societies for an informal session. Earth Sciences (BUGGS, DinoSoc and Society of Economic Geologists), Geography (GeogSoc and Archaeology and Anthropology are among those looking forward to hosting attendees. Find out what these groups have been up to recently. Hear about their plans and find out how you can get involved.

Time detectives  2:30 pm – 3:30 pm Bristol has a world-class facility for radiocarbon dating, which is being used by scientists from earth sciences, archaeology, chemistry and more.   Drop in to hear about the latest work on corals from the deep sea, samples of today's atmosphere, tree-ring collections, and coprolites or fossil poo.  Radiocarbon dating focuses on when things happened but also uncovers the why and how.  Register
Fishing for answers: new developments at Fishmonger's Swallet 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm  Recent work on the Iron Age human remains and the bones of domestic dogs and other animals recovered during a Time Team dig 20 years ago has used a variety of scientific techniques including radiocarbon dating to shed new light on this nationally important cave site, and the relationship between humans and dogs in later prehistory. As part of last year’s Spring Showcase, a short film followed by a live Q&A focussed on the evidence of cannibalism and now David Hardwick, Adelle Bricking and Jess Peto will return to talk about the latest exciting developments at this fascinating site. They will be joined for a live Q&A by Professor Mark Horton who directed the Time Team dig. Register
University Challenge Final 8:00 pm – 8:45 pm Join the live-streamed final of our University Challenge final. Sign your team up now. Register


We are committed to providing a safe and friendly community where all participants should feel welcome and are treated with kindness, fairness, respect, and tolerance. By following our digital events code of conduct, you help us to create a welcoming and friendly event for all. Our digital events code of conduct can be found here.

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