'Hope' chases out 'Dippy' as star of London museum

A giant skeleton of a blue whale is being unveiled at the Natural History Museum which is so big bosses hope it will make people finally forget the previous tenant Dippy the Diplodocus.

A semi-sheer lace neckline and sleeves, the gown featured one of the lowest necklines we've seen worn by the Duchess and provided an inevitable talking point.

The Duchess of Cambridge has made no secret of her love for nature and history so it's no surprise she had a huge smile on her face as she opened a new exhibit at London's Natural History Museum with Sir David Attenborough.

Commercial whaling saw the creatures on the verge of extinction before they became protected under global law in 1966.

The mammal, which has been nicknamed "Hope", originally went on display in 1934 but has been moved as part of a revamp at the south Kensington museum.

YUI MOK  AFP  Getty Images
YUI MOK AFP Getty Images

The digital experience, accessible both online and via the NHM Visitor app for iOS and Android, invites audiences to discover more about the whale in both its natural and preserved environments.

Dressed in a pale blue A-line dress with short sleeves, Middleton opted for no jewelry for the occasion, but paired her looked with black Prada strappy heels.

The 126-year-old skeleton has been positioned in a diving pose, taking months to prepare for exhibition. "Suspending such a large, complex and historical specimen from a Victorian ceiling was always going to be challenging, but we were determined to show her in as lifelike position as possible and we are thrilled that the result is truly spectacular".

The reopening of Hintze Hall marks the end of a five-year redevelopment programme at the museum by Casson Mann, which began with the refurbishment of the Treasures Gallery in 2012.

Hintze Hall used to be called the Central Hall. Today, the hall is named after him.

  • Kyle Peterson