Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Somerset Geology Group Newsletter Autumn 2012

Hugh Prudden of the Somerset Geology Group has sent the following;-
The centre of Yeovil is noteworthy for excellent displays of the condensed, algal facies of the Barrington Beds (Beacon Limestone, Upper Lias Limestone, Junction Bed, or what you fancy) in walls and buildings. There has been a long-standing need for a supply of this building stone but it is no longer worked. There were once shallow quarries all over the outcrop. Recycled stone is not always satisfactory as it tends to break up.
This is just one example of the need to find small quantities of new sources; the idea is to exploit temporary exposures and take the stone for preparation in established work shops. Ben Miller, Minerals Planning Officer, Environment Directorate of Somerset County Council, together with Geckoello Consultants, are interested in seeking new sources of building stones, especially for renovation work.
a. They need information on the which building stones might be needed but are no longer available e.g. North Curry Sandstone, Wedmore Stone, Calcareous Grit from the Upper Greensand, White Lias.  We need more suggestions.
b. We also need more potential sources of stones.
At present there are good supplies of Doulting Stone, Ham Hill Stone, Blue Lias, Budleigh Salterton Pebble beds (sandstone facies) at Capton, and Upper Westleigh Limestone. The Morte Slates in the old waste screes at Oakhampton Quarry are being used for walling. I would be happy to coordinate suggestions.

We are in the early stages of setting up a collection of Somerset building stones at the Somerset Heritage Centre in Taunton. We need good examples of North Curry Sandstone, Pennant Sandstone, Downside Stone.
Contact: Hugh Prudden with any information

Somerset Geology Group - other news
We no longer have meetings for various reasons but keep in touch with an occasional Newsletter.  This goes out to some 60 recipients, both local worthies and many in academia. Hugh welcomes news of recent publications, research and meetings. SGG is a loose association with no formal constitution or subscription. We do not seem to have a formal website yet but perhaps one day....this is Somerset! However, if you Google appropriate names and topics you will find much of interest including a useful Somerset Good Rock Guide to Somerset. It is a quick reference guide to the best places of general geological interest in Somerset. It is a starting point for exploring ...  Members are very active in various fields.  Please let me know of anyone who would like to be on the mailing list.

Websites of interest:-
a. this one! It contains news of events at home and abroad and useful links to associated groups in the region, one of which is the Bath Geological Society which has a superb programme of speakers and are recommended if you live in the area. 
b. Outcrop - blog of the Avon RIGS Group-promoting geology in the West Country’.  It contains news of forthcoming events, RIGS of the month spot, local minerals, fossils etc. It is clearly written and usefully highlights the various aspects of Avon and nearby areas.  Worth a look at.
c. Doreen Smith of the Dorset GA  Group issues a fine Newsletter with accounts of Dorset’s  geological highlights and events.  Details on their Website.

No comments: