A new code has been launched to keep people safe while fossil hunting.

The fossil code, which covers the Axmouth to Lyme Regis Undercliffs National Nature Reserve, advocates responsible and safe fossil collecting and seeks to strengthen collaboration and communication between those with an interest in fossils from this part of the Jurassic Coast.

The undercliffs’ code is based on the existing and successful West Dorset Fossil Code, differing in certain respects to take account of the specific characteristics and scientific value of the nature reserve.

The new code encourages responsible fossil collecting, the reporting and recording of important fossil finds and the acquisition of scientifically valuable fossils by recognised museums. In this way it supports the management of the Undercliffs National Nature Reserve and the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site.

The Axmouth to Lyme Regis Undercliffs National Nature Reserve and Site of Scientific Interest, encompasses approximately six miles of land slipped undercliffs.

The reserve contains rocks of Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous age, although fossils are only found in significant numbers in the latter two periods.

The undercliffs’ fossil code has been developed and prepared by Natural England, the Jurassic Coast Trust and the Charmouth Heritage Coast Centre and has the agreement of all landowners within the undercliffs.

For more information and to see the new Undercliffs National Nature Reserve fossil collecting code, visit www.jurassiccoast.org