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So the project has come to an end, and we are so thrilled and grateful for the generosity of the 104 people who have made it an unqualified success! We've said it quite often but we really do thank you. Norman the elephant will now be the best he possibly can be for many more generations in his new home.
As mentioned in the last update, going over our minimum funding amount has provided us with the funds to have Norman's tusks expertly replicated and replace don display, so that his precious ivory ones aren't at risk any more of being sawn off by thieves.
We have wasted no time whatsoever in making this happen!
Nigel Larkin, conservator extraordinaire, removing the tusks for the very first time:
After several hours of painstaking work, the tusks were removed safely. They have now been taken to Nigel's facility, and we will provide updates on their journey via our Twitter accounts @ColeMM2019 and @ColeZoology!
Although he now looks a little strange, every time I walk past him I smile - remembering how this project exceeded all expectations and made it possible for this to be done for Norman.
We are working on getting rewards together for all you lovely people that chose one! If you chose the thank you shout-out, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your Twitter/Instagram etc. so we can make that happen and celebrate together online!
From me (Meg), our curator Professor Amanda Callaghan and the rest of Team Cole,
A 'mammoth' thank you!
Just a quick update to say WOW! Dan at www.scrapthe9to5.com taking this project to dizzying new heights with an incredibly generous donation of £3000.
This project was picked up by the BBC, hopefully you heard us on BBC Berkshire or saw us on BBC South.
Thanks to everyone's kindness and generosity, we are now able to have Norman's precious ivory tusks expertly replicated and attached to the skeleton, so that the real tusks can be securely stored away. There are ivory thieves out there targeting museums don't you know!
Please share Norman far and wide, we have been bowled over by the number of people dedicating a bit of time and a lot of hard-earned money to him, so a very heartfelt thank you from all at Team Cole.
We are nearly at the £1000 mark thanks to the generosity of our current donors - please join the Norman conservation crew and donate today!