Hull Geological Society

 

 

 

News archive 2007-8

(updated 15th August 2009)

Thursday 11th December 2008 - (lectures) Barrie Heaton "A run on the Humber banks, part two" and Mike Horne "Did the Earth move for you? - the geology of some recent local natural disasters".

Abstracts -

"A run on the Humber banks, part two" by Barrie Heaton. Quaternary deposits mantle weathered Jurassic and Cretaceous rocks on both sides of the Humber estuary. They suggest a complex series of events prompted by changes in climate and sea level. Work at Red Cliffe on the north bank and at South Ferriby foreshore on the south, show a continuation into Lincolnshire of the pre-Devensian cliff feature so well documented from Sewerby. It is intended to review the findings of research on the Humber bank.

"Did the Earth move for you? - the geology of some recent local natural disasters" by Mike Horne. In the past people may have looked towards religion and priests to explain unknown phenomena. Now they look toward science. When a 'natural disaster' occurs the press and media look for a scientific expert! Any expert to provide suitable quotations. But this does give scientists the opportunity to tell the public about science! Examples - Earthquake on Wednesday 27th February 2008; epicentre near Market Rasen about 30 miles from Hull; at 12-50 am; 5.2 on the Richter scale. Plate tectonics explains how earthquakes are generated when plates collide or are subducted. But the UK is not on a plate boundary! Flooding on 25th June 2007 in Hull and parts of the East Riding of Yorkshire; my office at the University was flooded to a depth of 6 foot and virtually everything there was damaged beyond recovery. Landslips at Holbeck Hall Scarborough on 7th June 1993; Knipe Point Cayton Bay on 4th April 2008; and Aldbrorough any day of the week. Can an understanding of Geology provide some of the reasons for these disasters? Could geologists advise planners about risk assessment for the future? Click here for lecture summary.

 

Thursday 6th November 2008 - (lecture) "The amazing Mr Sheppard" by Prof. Mark Seaward of Bradford University, editor of The Naturalist, about Thomas Sheppard the first Curator of Hull Museums.

Abstract:-

Thomas Sheppard was born on 2 October 1876 in South Ferriby, Lincolnshire but spent his entire life in East Yorkshire. He received only elementary education; on leaving school at the age of 13 he worked as a clerk for 11 years, during which time he furthered his education, gaining certificates in a wide range of natural history subjects and a 1st class advanced stage certificate in geology which not only qualified him to teach, but facilitated his appointment as the first City Curator of the Hull Municipal Museum in 1901. Over the years, Sheppard was responsible for establishing a further six museums in Hull, namely Natural History Museum, Museum of Fisheries & Shipping, Museum of Commerce & Transport, Wilberforce House Museum, Mortimer Collection of Prehistoric Antiquities and Railway Museum, as well as the Tithe Barn Museum at Easington; the innovative Hull's 'Old Time' Street Museum, on which Sheppard had been working for much of his career, was unfortunately destroyed by bombs in 1941 before its official opening. As Director (a title conferred in 1926) of such a large number of successful museums, Sheppard was highly influential locally and nationally, but his often ruthessly acquisitive activities made him a decidedly controversial figure. He was a prolific writer, being the author of numerous books and innumerable scientific and cultural papers in c.165 journals and magazines; he also edited several journals, including The Naturalist (1903-1933), and held presidencies, secretaryships and other offices in many societies such as the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union, Museums Association and Hull Geological Society. He received an honorary MSc from the University of Leeds in recognition of his scientific activities and several other honours, including the Geological Society of London's Lyell Award and the Silver Medal of the French Association for the Advancement of Science. He was elected ALS, FGS, FSA, FRGS, FZS, FRAI and had honorary memberships of at least 16 societies. Through boundless energy and imagination, Sheppard amassed one of Britain's finest provincial museum collections; by doing so he not only put Hull on the map but also gained a national reputation for himself which was unfortunately tarnished by his overly-aggressive methods in acquiring material for these collections, many of which were destroyed by bombs and fire in 1941 and 1943 - the destruction of these and many of his notes, his lifetime's work, contributed to his further decline in health after retirement in 1941. He died in Hull on 18 February 1945.

 

Saturday 25th October 2008- joint afternoon meeting with the Yorkshire Geological Society - The theme for this meeting has been changed to - "Geology south of the Humber, down Lincolnshire way",

Abstracts -

A RUN ON THE HUMBER BANKS: Barrie Heaton and Terry Rockett, HGS Quaternary deposits mantle weathered Jurassic and Cretaceous rocks on both sides of the Humber estuary. They suggest a complex series of events prompted by changes in climate and sea level. Work at Red Cliffe on the north bank and at South Ferriby foreshore on the south, show a continuation into Lincolnshire of the pre-Devensian cliff feature so well documented from Sewerby. It is intended to review the findings of research on the Humber bank.

COVER SANDS: Paul Buckland and Mark Bateman, University of Sheffield Over much of north Lincolnshire, the solid and older Quaternary deposits are obscured by a variable thickness of sands. These Cover Sands, so called from the way in which they mantle the landscape, are most widespread in the area around Scunthorpe where they form the substrate for the once extensive areas of warren, now much depleted by agricultural improvement, mining of the Frodingham Ironstone and working of the sands themselves as a source of glass and building sand. At the base of the sands is often a thin peat horizon, and less well developed organic lenses also occur within the sands. Examination of the insect and plant remains from these provides a detailed picture of a cold, tundra environment with many elements now restricted to the far north and central mountain chain of Scandinavia. The context of this classic late glacial assemblage will be discussed in relation to similar sites in the region and the problems associated with the dating of the deposits will be considered.

CONFESSIONS OF A CHALKOHOLIC - Paul Hildreth Chalkoholism is not common but there is no simple cure. There are characteristic symptoms and identifiable causes. Management of the complaint is helped by living and working in eastern England and being able to attend meetings of sympathetic, occasionally like-minded groups. Dealing with chalkoholism in north Lincolnshire has involved a study of the lithostratigraphy of arguably England's most characteristic rock type. Research focused on Lincolnshire together with experience in East Yorkshire, East Anglia and south east England has shown the Chalk to be more than the simple, homogeneous (and to many, boring) formation than was believed by most early workers. Indeed, more questions than answers will be presented in this address.

RECENT DEVELOPMENTS AT WELTON-LE-WOLD - starting to unravel the glacial sequence: John Aram, The discovery in 1969 of elephant tusks and teeth in close association with flint hand-axes in active gravel workings at Welton-Le-Wold, near Louth in the Lincolnshire Wolds, drew geologist's attention to this site. The Proceedings of the Yorkshire Geological Society for 1976 (Vol.41 Pt.1) carried an account by Alabaster and Straw in which the three tills that occurred above the gravels were named and allocated dates in line with the models and terminology of the time. Unfortunately by this date the quarry had changed hands, been closed and back-filled to a level above the top of the gravels, so the INQUA group who visited the site in 1977 were only able to see the overlying tills. Despite this the Nature Conservancy designated the remaining faces as a Geological Site of Scientific Interest in 1986, recognising it was 'of crucial importance for facilitating further work to elaborate a regional Pleistocene stratigraphy for Central and Eastern England'. When the western part of the site came into a Countryside Stewardship scheme in 2001 the Lincolnshire RIGS group obtained funding from English Nature 'Facelift Funds' to machine-clean a small part of the face and to try to re-expose the upper gravels as close as possible to the site of the original fossil and artefact finds. Unfortunately the gravels were too deeply buried, but both the junctions between the Welton Gravels and the Welton Till, and the Welton Till with the overlying Calcethorpe Till were exposed. During the same year the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust purchased their first specific Geological Reserve, the extension of the Geological SSSI in the former quarry faces across the road. During 2004-5 further Facelift Funds were obtained for cleaning and making a limited excavation on the Reserve, where the gravels are now exposed with the overlying till that is itself covered by an easterly thickening layer of a very distinctive Red Till.

On behalf of the Society I wish to thank:- Paul Hildreth for organising the meeting; the speakers and co-authors - Barrie Heaton, John Aram, Mark Bateman, Paul Buckland, Paul Hildreth, and Terry Rockett; Martyn Pedley and the Geography Department for hosting the meeting; Anne Horne, Nina Scott, Paul Hildreth and Rod Towse for the cakes; Chris Blackhurst, Chris Leach, David Hill, Gordon Binns, Ian Scott, Nina Scott, Rod Towse, Stuart Jones and Terry Rockett for helping to set things up, brew the tea, and tidy things away at the end.

As well as the talks there were the following displays:- Chalk echinoids by Terry Rockett; Chalk fossils from Lincolnshire by Paul Hildreth; erratic fossils by Stuart Jones; erratics and sediment cores from Welton-le-Wold by John Aram; Jurassic and Lower Cretaceous fossils from Lincolnshire by Felix Whitham; Lincolnshire bricks by Ron Harrison; and photographs of fossils by Nina Scott.

The meeting was attended by about 45 people.

 

Lynden Emery, Honorary Life Member of the Society, died on Sunday 27th January 2008, aged 68. Lynden joined the Society in 1969 and the Yorkshire Geological Society in 1973. He was President of the Society from 1974 to 1977 and 1987 to 1990. He was Vice-President of the Society in 1986 and 1987. He was also an editor of East Yorkshire Field Studies and Humberside Geologist. In 1979 he wrote a 448-page thesis about the palaeoecology of the Speeton Clay, under the supervision of John Neale, and received a MSc from the University of Hull. He donated his carefully curated collection of Speeton Clay fossils to Hull Museums, before moving to Castle Carey in Somerset. The Society meetin in February 2009 is dedicated to his memory.

 

Tony Hibbert died in December 2007. Tony was a very active local naturalist, as well as being the Treasurer and keen supporter of the East Yorkshire RIGS Group. He trained and worked as an Industrial Chemist. He was an active member of the Hull Natural History Society for over 30 years and spent a few years as a regional conservation officer for the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust. He also undertook Humber Estuary Counts for the British Trust for Ornithology.

 

Joint meeting with the Yorkshire Geological Society - The 2007 meeting was held Saturday 27th October at the University. It was also a joint meeting with the Geological Society as part of their bicentenary celebrations and the theme is Quaternary Local Heroes.

Abstracts -

"The proglacial lake model of P.F.Kendall: surviving after a century?" by Ken J. Gregory.

The interpretation by Percy Fry Kendall (1856-1936) of deglaciation in the North York Moors, involving freely draining proglacial lakes, was published in papers in 1902 and 1903. It exemplified what we now think of as a model of landscape development under conditions of deglaciation; a model that was astounding in its conception, especially bearing in mind the techniques then available, the uncertainty of interpretation of glacial history at that time as a reference framework, and the difficulties that Kendall must have had in undertaking the necessary substantial field work.

Evaluation of the importance of the model can be considered in four ways. First, scutiny of the four lines of evidence used in his model - overflow channels, lake deposits, lake strandlines and deltas - in my research and that of others in the North York Moors. Second, diffusion of the model reveals that subsequent research elsewhere in the UK placed undue reliance upon one line of evidence - the overflow channels - so that many areas ostensibly interpreted using the Kendall model were actually based upon partial interpretations. In textbooks and geomorphological literature, diffusion of the model was largely confined to Britain and Europe, with less frequent citations in North America. Third, reactions to the model, although often stimulated by the partial or incorrect applications of the Kendall interpretation, were aided by increasing knowledge of the behaviour of glacial ice and particularly of stagnant ice decay, thus progressing towards alternative model formulations. Fourth, present models of proglacial environments owe much to contemporary interpretations of proglacial processes and macrofacies models, together with catastrophism that provides some return to Kendall's ideas.

Evaluation after a century of research inevitably shows how the model has been superseded, but Kendall's original contribution stands as a ground-breaking proposal of international scientific significance and one that established a foundation for interpretation of patterns of deglaciation.

"W.S.Bisat and Quaternary Geology" by Patrick J. Boylan.

The development of our present-day understanding of the Pleistocene of East Yorkshire through the second half of the 19th and first half of the 20th centuries depended crucially on the work of a few geologists, most of them self-taught, and many of them closely associated with the Hull Geological Society: S.V.Wood (jun.) and J.L.Rome (who predated the establishment of the Society in 1888), J.W.Stather, the Society's Founder-Secretary, G.W.Lamplugh of the Geological Survey, and William Sawney Bisat (1886-1973). Though far better known today for his outstanding contributions to Carboniferous stratigraphy and palaeontology, W.S.Bisat was in many ways as influential in relation to unravelling the complications of the 'Ice Age' in Yorkshire and surrounding regions. With his move after World War I from the Carboniferous and Permian of the Doncaster area to North Ferriby, Bisat quickly widened his geological interests to include the Pleistocene and Recent, first of Holderness and then of Yorkshire generally.

His work included the extremely detailed long-term recording over more than 20 years of the stratigraphy of the whole of the 55 km-long rapidly changing coastline of Holderness. This was often done in collaboration with other local amateurs from the Hull Geological Society, particularly with Cecil Wright Mason. His coast section was finally published, though posthumously, by J.A.Catt and P.A.Madgett in the 1981 book to mark the retirement of Lewis Penny. In the course of this detailed mapping, Bisat developed a new overview of the Pleistocene of East Yorkshire, recognizing that there had been at least two major glaciations. It was this, not his Carboniferous work, that he presented as his 1939 Presidential Address to the Yorkshire Geological Society. It was no accident that, when in 1961 he endowed a medal to be awarded by the Yorkshire Geological Society, it was dedicated to John Phillips, another self-taught geologist, who in the first half of the 19th century had been similarly fascinated equally by Yorkshire's complex Carboniferous and Pleistocene histories.

"Arthur Raistrick - Dalesman and Quaternary Pioneer" by Wishart Mitchell.

Arthur Raistrick (1896-1991) made an important contribution to the understanding of the Yorkshire Dales landscape through his many publications spanning over 60 years. His first papers reveal an interest in the glacial legacy found in the mountains of northern England and reflect his research carried out at Leeds University under the supervision of P.F. Kendall. Raistrick's contribution to Quaternary research in northern England included two main themes: first, the glaciation of the Yorkshire Dales, which resulted in the first detailed papers on this important subject; and second, the palynological investigation of upland peats, in which he was a pioneer in Britain. In both these scientific areas, his papers form important reference points for present day research. In this paper I will evaluate the role played by Raistrick in developing understanding of the glacial history of the Yorkshire Dales and review present knowledge of the area during the last glaciation. I will also consider aspects of pollen studies important in understanding Holocene climatic change and Pennine archaeology.

"Local Heroes: J W Stather, Tom Sheppard and the East Riding Boulder Committee" by Mike Horne.

J W Stather and Tom Sheppard had a huge influence on the study of East Yorkshire geology. They filled key roles in the first 57 years of the Hull Geological Society and were both past Presidents of the Yorkshire Geological Society.

John Walker Stather (1857-1938) was an amateur geologist who ran a local family firm manufacturing wallpaper. He was a founder member of the HGS and was the Secretary for nearly fifty years. He carried out research and published several papers in The Naturalist, HGS Transactions and YGS Proceedings. Amongst his contributions to the understanding of the Quaternary of the region are his excavations at Bielsbeck, his fascination with the quartzite pebbles of the Wolds and "Stather's Section", a large raft of oolite at South Cave.

Thomas Sheppard (1876-1945) was the first Curator of Hull Museums who, despite promising at his job interview that he would not spend the budget on specimens, managed to fill nine museums by the time he retired and his acquisitiveness on behalf of the city was notorious! He was the author of nearly 300 books and papers about East Yorkshire geology, but also wrote about geology outside of the Riding and on numerous other topics - he was a true polymath. He did much to raise the profile of geology, science, museums and Tom Sheppard. He is probably best remembered amongst local geologists for his "Rambles", bibliographies and ensuring that the details of every small geological find were published for the benefit of future scientists.

Although the British Association's Boulder Committee began its work in the early 1870s Holderness seems to have been largely ignored until the formation of the East Riding Boulder Committee in 1892 with the encouragement of Percy Fry Kendall. The "committee" members systematically recorded and published reports of glacial erratics in the region until it was discontinued in 1935. The HGS rejuvenated it for its Centenary in 1988 and still holds regular field meetings as a means of introducing the public to local geology and scientific research.

The full text will be available at - http://www.horne28.freeserve.co.uk/lercal1.htm

 

 

In the flooding in Hull on 25th June 2007 half of our stock of Humberside Geologist numbers 13 and 14 was destroyed along with the entire stock of Humberside Geologist Special Publication number 2. Some of the details of ongoing research projects was also lost in the flood. The Humber and Wolds Community Council kindly provided a grant to reprint the copies of Humberside Geologist that we lost in flooding.

 

Report of our Yorkshire Geology Month 2007 events -

The "Walk on the Woldside" went well. We restricted the bookings. There were 38 people there for this pleasant walk around Thixendale. The weather was just right for walking, and the sun came out occasionally. The leader Derek Gobbett stopped several times to talk about the features we could see. And there was a detour to look at some disused quarries and find some Chalk fossils. The walk lasted about 3 hours.

"Rock Festival" at the Treasure House - this was a very busy roadshow; unfortunately we were too busy to count the number of people attending, so I suspect it was about 300 or 400. Many people had travelled some distance to bring specimens to show us. There were displays of fossils from Holderness by Stuart Jones; fossil plants by Ben Blackhurst, Chris Blackhurst and Gordon Binns; dinosaur fossils on loan from Dinostar; and polished rocks and gems by Gordon Bulmer and Patty McAlpin from Kingston Lapidary Club. Paul Richards, Terry Rockett and Mike Horne were on hand to help with the identifications. And Mike also gave talks about East Yorkshire Geology in front of the Treasure House's permanent display. Stefan Ramsden (of East Riding Council) did a splendid job organising the publicity, making us feel welcome and keeping up a constant supply of cups of tea! Stefan has received this letter of thanks from one of the visitors - "... Congratulations on the above event. We took our granddaughter, almost ten, with her few pebbles, which the Experts went to a lot of trouble to identify, also explaining their exhibits. The highlight for her was being allowed to use the microscope. She will now be getting one for her birthday. Everyone was so eager to pass on their knowledge, so patient and courteous. It was a grand day out and thank you "

Hornsea Fossil Fossick led by Stuart Jones and Terry Rockett - Paul Richards writes - "It was quite well attended. Total group size about 39, including Bev Hylton [East Riding Council] , Stuart, Terry, Ron Harrison , Mavis May and myself. About 1/4 were small children. The weather looked threatening, but held out ok, we started at 11:30, ended at around 2 - rather longer than we had planned. Some people had come from as far as Leeds area. Most [were] from Hornsea or Hull. " Access down the concrete steps wasn't perfect but we coped... Some people came down a slope further along - via the caravan park. It's not much safer. In the wet it would be terrible. On the way back we helped several people along the caisson wall section. The hazard there is sliding on the sloping concrete with sand on our shoes. We had considered not taking everyone past the sea defenses, but in the end everyone made it. Terry had made it clear to people that there were risks beforehand. "Finds were pretty much as usual, a couple of Dactylioceras, many incomplete ammonites, two brachiopods (Calcirhynchia?) found in the clay, a few whole Gryphaea plus many conglomerate shell bed pieces, plenty of Lithostrotion. It's very helpful having the large boulders on the beach. One has a lot of crinoids. Someone found a piece of uncoiled ammonite, consistent with Aegocrioceras. I did see a small length of Acrocoelites. The locals seem to have hundreds of nice items in their collections - they brought along a few 10 mm diameter ammonites, heavily coated in pyrites." We thank East Riding of Yorkshire Council for publicizing the events and for handling the public bookings.

"Rock Bash" at Hull and East Riding Museum, organised by Paul Richards. There were displays of fossil plants by Ben Blackhurst, Chris Blackhurst and Gordon Binns; and polished rocks and gems by Gordon Bulmer of the Kingston Lapidary Club, microfossils and East Yorkshire fossils by Patty Mcalpin; dinosaur bones, claws and teeth by Steve Plater from Dinostar; and specimens from the Hull Museums Schools Loans Collection by Paul Austin and Paula Gentil. Barrie Heaton, Paul Richards, Terry Rockett and Mike Horne were the "experts" on the identification panel. About 125 people attended. We thank Hull Museums for hosting the event and the staff at HERM for making their help.

Whitby on June 3rd - Paul Hildreth writes- "Only 5 people, and the leader, turned up for this excursion on what was a beautiful sunny day. Members of the select group had traveled from Hull, the Isle of Axholme and Wakefield. "Spring low tides gave us the opportunity to spend a comfortable two hours on the wave-cut platform between East Pier and Saltwick Nab. The leader indicated the mudstone-dominant rocks on the foreshore and the occurrence of ammonites, belemnites and the small nut-shaped bivalve Dacromya ovum. These indicated a marine environment and were deposited during the lower part of the Jurassic period. Some time was spent looking for different types of ammonite (Dactylioceras and Hildoceras). "Further east, a brief study of the cliff section revealed the Dogger, about 10 metres above the base overlain by thick sandstone deposits. In one place it was clear a river had channeled its way through surrounding sandstone 'flats' scouring out a new course down to and in places through the Dogger. The group discussed the change in environmental conditions that these sandstones (Saltwick Formation) represented, an advancing delta. Fallen blocks of sandstone were examined; many showed cross-bedding, slump structures and ripples. Some beds were iron-rich (sideritic), others rich in plant fragments (?Whitby Plant Bed). "The group then moved along to Long Bight. Here it was noted that we had crossed the hinge of a syncline. The Dogger is well exposed as a gently dipping ledge and is easily accessible. The junction of the Dogger with underlying Whitby Mudstones was clear showing a pebbly base and borings into the lower beds, a classic disconformity. Some derived ammonites were present as 'pebbles' on blocks of fallen and overturned Dogger. "The group returned to Whitby harbour where the leader pointed out the sandstone cliffs at Khyber Pass on the west side. The group members were asked to recall where the Dogger had occurred in the East Cliff section and were informed that on the West Cliff it is at low water mark. The difference in level (about 16m) is accounted for by the Whitby Fault, which is now occupied by the estuary of the River Esk. "After lunch the group traveled inland to Duckscar Quarry, Egton Bridge. Amongst the thick vegetation and aroma of wild garlic, the leader pointed out the silty sandstones of the Middle Jurassic country rocks then indicated the presence of much harder, more rounded blocks. Fresh specimens revealed a black, crystalline fine-grained igneous rock - the Cleveland Dyke - which had been removed for roadstone. "The group moved on to its final locality on the moors above Goathland avoiding the busy traffic bound for Adensfield! Here trenches scar the moorland surface where dyke rock has been removed. It was finally noted that the trend of the excavations (120 - 300) is precisely the same that of the dyke at Egton Bridge."

 

April 2007 - The Society now has a new website - If you would like to contribute material or photographs please contact the new wedsite editor David Baker

 

Thursday January 18th 2007 - (evening lecture) Jamie Casford of Durham University - "Black Shales, Sapropels and Ocean Anoxic Events(OAE's)".

Abstract

"This talk will look at my current work on organic rich deposits of the Quaternary in the Eastern Mediterranean (sapropels) and my collaboration with John Marshall of the National Oceanographic Centre in Southampton on the Jurassic Kimmeridge Clay deposits from the South coast.

"Sapropels found in the Eastern Mediterranean are important windows into past climate change and hence our understanding of future trends in climate. They are also widely regarded as analogues of the oil producing black shale deposits like those of the Kimmeridge Clay. These are thought to have been periods of enhanced biological productivity and reduced ocean circulation. In fact, the presence of chemical fossils has led many to believe these are periods where ocean circulation was so reduced that oceans stagnated and basin wide anoxia and even euxinia occurred (i.e. absence of dissolved oxygen in the water and sulphur reducing conditions incompatible with most life).

"However recently reported sapropel 'interruptions' represent centennial-scale episodes of enhanced frequency/ intensity of intermittent bottom-water ventilation and that this ventilation process appears to continued to occur throughout periods of sapropel deposition. This mechanism also provides insight into the differences in timing of and the depositional mechanisms in Black Shales and OAE's. Data from the Kimmeridge Clay also suggests that bottom water anoxia may have been spatially restricted and/or of an intermittent nature and that even where these conditions were present, they may be restricted to a veneer at the sediment/water interface.

"This has important implications to our understanding of how these organic rich deposits form and suggests we need to rethink our current understanding of the environments present during there deposition. "

 

Saturday 24th February 2007 - (afternoon public lecture) Dr Jenni Chambers of the Ice Age Network and Birmingham University - "The big chill: life in the ice age" at the Ferens Art Gallery in Hull. Organised jointly by Hull Museums and the Hull Geological Society.

Jenni is "a Palaeolithic archaeologist specialising in lithic technology, with a special interest in the formation processes of secondary context Lower Palaeolithic assemblages - essentially handaxes in river gravels, which has led to lots of comedy experiments with replica artefacts and welsh rivers! "

"The National Ice Age Network (NIAN) is explicitly concerned with the archaeological, environmental and sedimentological evidence of the Ice Age uncovered during sand and gravel extraction activities. NIAN is an Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund (ALSF) funded initiative administered by English Heritage and English Nature, is seeking to strengthen contacts between archaeologists, geologists, Quaternary scientists and other specialists, quarry companies and the general public, thereby creating an inclusive and supportive network of those interested in the Ice Age.

"The Network has three main aims: Firstly, to build good working relationships with the quarry industry so that finds are reported and recorded in a manner as non-disruptive as possible to commercial activity on each site. Secondly, to visit all active aggregates extraction sites in England to assess their potential for preserving evidence useful for reconstructing past environments, and/or Palaeolithic artefacts. Wherever practical the potential of inactive sites will also be assessed. The third main aim is education and outreach, providing information to all interested parties (e.g. academic and commercial archaeologists, local history/archaeological societies about the nature of Ice Age evidence, how we identify it and how we use these lines of evidence to reconstruct past environments and behaviours." "

 

 

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