180-year-old emperor penguin from Tring competes for museums award

The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London
The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London

A 180-year-old emperor penguin specimen from Antarctica is in with a chance of swooping the most-loved object owned by a museum.

Eleven museums nominated an item to compete for the Hertfordshire Association of Museums Object of the Year.

The bird, collected by British explorer Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker during an 1839-43 Antarctic expedition, is on display at the Natural History Museum at Tring.

Also in the running is the Stanhope Peep Pipe, which reveals an image of St Mary’s Church in Hemel Hempstead.

At last year's inaugural awards, it was won by Charlie the Chimp from Watford Museum which got more than 65 percent of the public vote.

Voting closes on October 31.