HAVE you ever walked past the doors of the Bournemouth Natural Science Society on Christchurch Rd and wondered what mysteries lie within?

Well this weekend you can find out, as the doors to the Victorian building will be opened to the public between 10-4pm, with free entry.

The open weekend at the Bournemouth Natural Science Society forms part of the Bournemouth Arts By The Sea festival and reveals one of the region’s most fascinating and unique collections.

Being described as a ‘time capsule’, the open weekend at Bournemouth Natural Science Society allows access to all areas, giving families the opportunity to see botanical specimens, geology, birds, butterflies and even an Egyptian mummy. On top of the displays free drop-in sessions for children aged between five and 12 will run on both days, being led by artist Pauline Stanley.

The Society has several claims to fame. The first President was John Beale – founder of Beales department store – and it subsequently had many prestigious Presidents, such as Lord Grenfell, a famous field-marshal, who loved all things Egyptian and Dame Katherine Lonsdale, who made outstanding contributions to X-ray crystallography.

It has been host to many highly respected speakers on various subjects relating to the natural world, including TV presenter Alan Titchmarsh in the 1980s.