Guard dogs will protect Lauriston Castle dinosaurs from vandals

FEARSOME dinosaurs in the grounds of an historic Edinburgh castle will be guarded by dogs - to protect them from local youths.

Thursday, 29th March 2018, 12:03 pm
Updated Thursday, 29th March 2018, 12:03 pm
Dinosaurs are on offer at Lauriston Castle over Easter

More than 30 lifesize moving dinosaurs including a 16-metre long Diplodocus, Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus Rex, loom over the Lauriston Castle park as part of Jurassic Kingdom: Where Dinosaurs Come To Life.

The spectacular outdoor dinosaur experience will officially open to families on Friday, but security has had to be beefed up after vandals tried to attack the robotic beasts during their installation.

Security, including a team of three Alsatians and two Japanese Akitas, will now patrol the site after dark to guard the prehistoric animatronics.

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The move comes after groups said to have numbered over 20 youths entered the grounds at night to vandalise and push over dinosaurs.

Vandals have also attacked the installations at previous locations including in Manchester where youths tried to set one alight.

Naz Kabir, Weli Creative’s event and marketing director, said: “We have unfortunately experienced some antisocial behaviour since we began installation of the Jurassic Kingdom exhibition at Lauriston Castle.

“Our priority is ensuring that the event provides the best possible experience for our visitors. We have therefore installed 24 hour surveillance and on-site teams to ensure the exhibits are protected and we look forward to welcoming the public when Jurassic Kingdom opens on Friday.”

Site manager Dylan Zheng added: “There are going to be 36 dinosaurs at Lauriston. At night time there will be a two-dog unit so the whole area will be protected.”

Jurassic Kingdom: Where Dinosaurs Come To Life, will be at historic Lauriston Castle from March 30 to April 15 before moving on to Sheffield, Rotterdam, Cardiff and Nottingham.

Some 36 animated dinosaurs feature electronic moving parts including moving heads and arms, swaying tails, blinking eyes and opening jaws, with “roaring sound effects”.

The dinosaurs cover three key areas including the Jurassic, Triassic and Cretaceous period.

Visitors Neil and Isabel Johnston, from Edinburgh, took daughters Ava and Isla on a walk with their Chihuahua George to see the exhibition being installed.

Neil, 35, said: “The dinosaurs are spectacular. It’s nice to have good things like this around, especially for Ava who is two and enjoys these sorts of things.”

One elderly dog walker added: “The dinosaurs are huge, but I’d rather taken on a T-Rex than one of those security dogs.”

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