Fab Lab prize winner creates new East Devon dinosaur fossil

Posted on: 5 October 2015

Creative youngsters across Devon have seen their designs come to life during a VIP session at Fab Lab Devon.

Devon County Council held a competition to encourage students of all ages to discover what the digital fabrication workshop at Exeter Library has to offer, and the winners are delighted with their experience.

Eight year old Florence Hollyer from West Hill designed her own dinosaur fossil and won a VIP session for her and her friends and family to see a laser cutter turn her creation into a replica fossil.

She said:

“For my design I looked on the internet to look for different parts of the dinosaur body and then I created a dinosaur with a unicorn horn on it.

I heard about the competition at school because were going to the fossil festival.

I entered the competition because I wanted to get my fossil design actually turned into a fossil on a piece of slate.

I am happy with my fossil design.”


Volunteer Nigel FitzHugh said:

“Today I’ve been using the Fab Lab laser cutter for Florence who has designed a fossil. We have engraved her fossil onto a piece of slate. The result has been really good.

We’ve also been cutting and engraving on acrylic. Florence and her friends and family designed key fobs with their name on them. They decided the size and the layout so they have learnt some software. They’ve done a great job.

The great thing about the laser cutter is that it’s quick to demonstrate and to achieve a finished product from a design.

Working with Florence today has been a real pleasure. She actually understood what was going on and picked things up very quickly. I thought her design was really imaginative and it looked like the real thing!”

Fab Lab Devon is the first ‘Fab Lab’ ever to open in a UK public library.For more information, including tips from the experts, visit Fab Lab Devon’s website.


The Fab Lab, or fabrication laboratory, is a low-cost digital workshop equipped with laser-cutters, 3D printers and scanners, Computer Numerical Control (computer controlled) router, 3D milling machines, electronics bench and programming and design tools.

It’s an open access, not-for-profit, community resource where users can invent and make just about anything.

The equipment enables users to develop or refine a product or object from first idea to a formed and working prototype.

There are over 200 Fab Labs around the world, open to local inventors, artists, small businesses, entrepreneurs, students and community users.

Fab Lab Devon is on the ground floor of Exeter Library in the room adjacent to the new Business and Information Hub, which provides business information and intellectual property (IP) support for local businesses. This complimentary set up enables users to develop or refine a product or object from first idea to a formed and working prototype.  Advice and further business support is also available to help develop the business proposal to ensure a route to market.

Devon County Council has invested £90,000 capital funds in the Fab Lab, with up to a further £30,000 of investment from the ACE Bridge Challenge Fund run by the Real Ideas Organisation and £30k from the Digital Makers Fund (run by Nesta and Nominet Trust, in partnership with Autodesk).

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