VOLUNTEERS are being sought to help a west Dorset town set up a twinning link with an Australian community.

Lyme Regis Town Council is considering a request to twin Lyme Regis with the town of Richmond. Richmond is a small town in a rural part of western Queensland, with a population of around 850 people.

An ambassador for Richmond attended Lyme Regis Fossil Festival in April, and the mayor of Richmond Shire Council has since written to the town council to suggest the twinning of the two towns.

Reporting to the town council’s tourism, community and publicity committee, deputy town clerk Mark Green said: “The area is renowned for its marine fossils and shares many of the same types of fossils that are found in the Lyme Regis area.

“The town attracts large numbers of fossil-related visitors from the rest of Australia and further afield and hosts a large, modern museum which celebrates the fossil heritage of the area.

“The museum is considered to be the premier marine fossil museum in the whole of Australia."

He added: “Although Lyme is already twinned with both St George’s, Bermuda and Barfleur, France, there is no reason why it should not be twinned with a third town.

“The two towns are renowned centres for marine fossils, fossil hunting and scientific discovery in their respective countries and there appears to be strong synergy between the two places in that respect.”

The council is now appealing for Lyme Regis residents who might be interested in taking forward the idea to express their interest. The council has also approached Lyme Regis Museum to determine whether there is a potential benefit in developing links between the two museums.

The response from the museum has been positive and this potential link will be pursued.

Anyone who is interested in taking forward the idea of twinning is asked to contact Adrianne Mullins by emailing admin@lymeregistowncouncil.gov.uk or calling 01297 445175.