A unique kite dreamed up by the High Sheriff of Dorset is flying out around the world after its innovative design captured people’s imaginations.
Sibyl Fine King’s pterodactyl kite is now being sold all over the UK and in Europe, Australia and North America.
Pterodactyls were a type of pterosaur, a flying reptile that flew over the Jurassic Coast millions of years ago when dinosaurs roamed the land. Lyne Regis’s own fossil hunter Mary Anning discovered the fossilised remains of the first British pterosaur early in the 19th century.
Sibyl Fine King, of the Fine Family Foundation, is a long-standing supporter of projects along the Jurassic Coast. She thought it would be wonderful for pterodactyls to fly once more over the famous Dorset and Devon coastline and so worked with designers to create and patent the design.
Jurassic Kites Ltd started selling the kites to local stockists before moving to direct mail order and soon orders were coming in from all over the world.
She said: “I’m thrilled to see pterodactyls flying so far and wide. It’s wonderful to hear from so many customers how much they enjoy our kite. One of my favourite comments is from a kite festival participant, ‘Pterry’ stole the show! Well worth the money, highly recommended’.”
The company includes information about the history of the dinosaurs and the Jurassic Coast with each kite to help promote Dorset. Jurassic Kite co-director Martin Cooke has spent the last 18 years helping clients to develop, fundraise for and implement projects throughout Dorset with a particular focus on the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site.
Martin has played a leading role in securing more than £20m of funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and other funding sources, via his consultancy Heritage and Leisure (heritageandleisure.co.uk)
Martin has secured distributors for the kite in Australia and France and a licence for stockists in the USA and Canada.
He has also encouraged customers to send in photos of their pterodactyls flying and the locations have been posted on a world map on the website. More than 70 customer photos have been received with ‘pterodactyl sightings’ in the Seychelles, over the Washington Monument in the USA and above The Pyramids in Egypt.
Martin said: “It’s great to see our kite being sold across the globe, from dinosaur museums in the outback of Queensland, Australia to toy shops in states across the US.”
To take a look at pterodactyl sightings visit jurassickites.co.uk/pterodactyl-sightings
For more information visit jurassickites.co.uk