Thursday, 8 December 2011

Mendip Volcano?

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Please let us have your comments.


Ian said...

Well, of course there are hot rocks under Mendip. Hence the Bath Spa,Bristol Hotwells and St David's Well in Cardiff. But a borehole to let water get any deeper than it's got already? I doubt if it's physically or even mechanically possible. These boreholes are only about 12" in
diameter - you'd wait a long time for enough water to trickle through to make a steam explosion. But do look into the history of Higher Pitts Farm, near Priddy - at the top of Ebbor Gorge where manganese was once mined, (The O/S map says iron, but that's fairly widespread on Mendip) and the associated rare minerals which were much sought
after by mineralogists and geology students. There's nothing to find there now, as the farmer had been told by a vet that his cows' mysterious illness might be due to poisoning possibly caused by
students' searches of the mine waste heaps. He had the tips all covered up in the late 1950s. He wasn't taking any risks, even though no cows actually died, and they all recovered.
The source of these interesting minerals,some of which can be seen in Bristol collections, is, the farmer's son told me, "a gigantic prehistoric explosion, at Mells, near Frome". As I haven't been able to verify this, I'd welcome any further information.

Alan said...

I think the issue is a lot of hot air and is nimbeism. Also the company will only drill into the Carboniferous and not into the rocks of the volcanics at Moons Hill. By the way any volcanics there are long gone and the Bath geothermal aspect is a red herring.

Andrew said...

It would be helpful to know what shale is being targeted on the Mendips. On the other hand it is worrying to have scare stories about totally extinct volcanoes, although I am wary of fracking in practice. said...

Dinosaurs roamed the Mendip Hills not that long ago (relatively speaking) is he worried that they might be awoken along with the volcano? Some what more probable I suspect!!! Mr taylor is keeping an open mind well there certainly seems to be plenty of room in there.

Anonymous said...

Although I am no supporter of
"fracking", I would point out that the Silurian volcanic rocks were twisted to vertical angles by the Caledonian orogeny, then subsequently pushed northward and folded by the Armorican one. If they could survive all that without fresh eruptions, it is not likely that there is a magma chamber waiting to burst forth as we speak. The active plate margins have moved around since Carboniferous times. It is generally accepted now that the
heat of the Bath waters is due to the breakdown of radioactive isotopes.

Simon said...

The water is very old and it's a long slow journey. Nonetheless, anything that might mess with the sources of the Bath hot springs surely has to be discouraged!

Anonymous said...

Didn't that nice Dr Kellaway give a talk on the Bath hot springs, and the new interpretation post book and conference? A line of warm / hot springs from Hotwell, Brizzle, to Marchwood, Soton? About parallel to the Sticklepath Fault, I thought, tho' I never checked on a map.

All the associated stuff will be fun, when we no longer have to go to Iceland or Yosemite to see geysirs, boiling mudpools and such.

Bring it on.