A 19th century poster advertising a series of talks at the Bridport Literary and Scientific Institute has been discovered in a local bookshop.

LSi lecturer Tim Connor, who recently presented his own sold-out illustrated talk at the venue, discovered the 19th-century poster promoting a series of popular James Silk Buckingham’s lectures whilst browsing in Bridport Old Books in South Street.

Buckingham's lectures told of his travels in Egypt, Palestine, Mesopotamia, Babylonia and Assyria, and were delivered in the institution’s lecture room in November 1835.

Phyllida Culpin, chairman of Bridport Area Development Trust (BADT), said: “The chance discovery of this link to the LSi’s earliest days is a wonderful story and we are delighted to be able to display an original, historical artefact that is so relevant to our own narrative.

“It illustrates that the LSi remains true to its founding principles and that the restoration project has ensured the continuation of the building’s educational and cultural roles for the benefit of the community. The LSi will continue to be used for lectures and public events, just as it was in 1835.”

Mr Connor alerted Bridport Area Development Trust, to make sure that the Trust acquired the poster for display in the historic building.

Rosie Young, co-owner of Bridport Old Books, in South Street, described how the poster came to light.

She said: “We bought a six-volume set of Edward Gibbon’s The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, at The Auction House in Bridport. The books originally came from Joseph Gundry of the local rope-making family, and the poster was folded into the pages of volume one.”

James Silk Buckingham was an author, journalist, traveller, and lecturer who was born in Falmouth, Cornwall, and spent much of his youth at sea.

When ashore he worked part-time as a compositor for printing businesses, publishing several works on his extensive travels before settling in India where he established the Calcutta Journal.