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Tuesday 3rd January 2006

The periglacial Quaternary deposits of Bideford Bay from Saunton to Westward Ho!
Field trip led by: Peter Keene and Chris Cornford

This will involve moderate walking on wave cut platform -hard hats and visibility vests will be provided

10.00 Meet Saunton Sands car park, Grid Ref. SS447376, High Tide 08.00 (5.97 metres)

The modern beach and dunes are contrasted with the sandrock of the raised beach. This is sandwiched between the steeply dipping late Devonian/early Carboniferous Pilton beds (at an impressive angular unconformity) and the overlying periglacial ‘head’ deposits. Sedimentary structures within the carbonate-cemented sandrock tell of shore-face processes also operating today, while unusual cast-like features show dissolution-collapse and hydrogeological effects. Glacial/interglacial cycling, global sea-level change and glacial erratics will be discussed with reference to these spectacular south facing cliff outcrops.

Pub lunch at ‘The Thatched Barn Inn’ at Croyde (Tel:01271 890349)

14.00 Meet Westward Ho slipway car park, Grid Ref SS433295

Subject to winter storms the ‘fossil forest’ and associated glacial clays will be visited below the slipway at Westward Ho! Evidence of ice wedges (patterned ground) and frost-shattered pebbles will be related to the peat beds and possibly the Neolithic midden (Thor permitting). Some effects of long-shore drift and the high (and differential) erosion rates on this part of the coast will observed in the context of the development of the town. And finally, the pebbly raised beaches to the west of Westward Ho! will be contrasted with those of the morning outcrops.

Please contact Chris Cornford on 01237 471749 or 0777 378 8243 if unable to attend on the day

 

 


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