Category: Gloucestershire

Gloucestershire has some of the best inland and river sites in the UK, and includes the River Severn locations that were previously part of the county of Avon, after Avon ceased to be a county. Along the River Severn, the famous Triassic bone bed can be found at Aust, Sedbury Cliff, Westbury-on-Severn and in the Wainlode cliffs. Inland sites provide an opportunity to collect Jurassic fossils from disused quarries, outcrops and cuttings. In the forest of Dean, you can collect Carboniferous plant remains from the most famous coal measures of the UK. Gloucestershire really does have a wide array of sites and geology.

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Tites Point

The actual site is a foreshore location on the eastern shore of the River Severn to the west of Tites Point, in Gloucestershire. At low tide, the Silurian Ludlow beds are exposed, yielding a range of fossils, including seeds, plants and molluscs. However, of most importance is the abundance of fish remains from the Ludlow Fish Bed. Silurian, Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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Aust cliff

The famous red and white cliffs that can be seen when crossing the River Severn contain a highly productive bone bed at the top from the Rhaetian Penarth series. This bed is full of teeth, and reptile and fish remains, and is the most productive Triassic site in the UK. Triassic, Jurassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

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Sedbury cliff

On the opposite side of the River Severn from the famous Aust Cliff, there are the much less famous Sedbury Cliffs. At what first appears to be a location similar but far less productive than Aust, it is actually a very productive location for Jurassic fossils. Triassic, Jurassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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Westbury on Severn

Further up the River Severn from the other classic sites, such as Aust and Hock Cliff, Westbury-on-Severn (also known as Garden Cliff) is one of the finest localities for collecting from the famous Rhaetian- aged bone bed from the Penarth Group. Out of all of the localities along the Severn, this has the most rapid erosion. Triassic, Jurassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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Gilberts Grave

This is a disused railway cutting, hidden away in a thick forest. The small cutting has good exposures of Inferior Oolite and this location is well documented for its Clypeus sinuatus flat echinoids, but many brachiopods and bivalves can also be found. Jurassic, Disused Railway Cutting, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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Leckhampton Hill

A pleasant few hours can be spent at Leckhampton Hill. There are numerous old quarry faces with piles of scree to investigate. Fossils are not abundant but, with patience, some should be collected. The views from this hill are impressive and the walk to the various sites is an enjoyable (if hilly) one. Jurassic, Outcrops, Disused Quarries, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Hock Cliff

For those who have visited Watchet in Somerset looking for fossils in the Blue Lias, this location will seem remarkably similar. Indeed, the same fossils can be found in thick limestone bands and soft shale. Hock Cliff is a classic Jurassic location to explore. Jurassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Wainlode Cliff

Wainlode Cliff is a less popular location for collecting fossils from the Triassic bone beds of the Rhaetic aged rocks of the Westbury Formation than, for example, Aust. The cliff height is quite impressive, but the problem is this location is more overgrown than others, and does not wash out as regularly. The taller cliffs also mean that the bone bed is inaccessible and unfortunately rarely falls.
Triassic, Jurassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦

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Soudley Valley

Soudley Valley has a geological trail, taking you through the geological features of the Forest of Dean. One of the locations on the trail features a spoil heap of Carboniferous coal measures, where you can find fossil plants. This guide concentrates on this location.Carboniferous, Spoil, Rating: ♦♦

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Crickley Hill

Crickley Hill is now part of a national park, where there is an official geological trail with an Iron Age hill fort nearby. There are a few sites along the official guide taking you through the geological history of the area, but this guide concentrates on the Crickley Member (formerly known as Pea Grit) quarry of the Birdlip Limestone. Jurassic, Disused Quarries, Scree, Rating: ♦

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Robinswood Hill

The two large quarry faces at Robinswood hill are sites of special scientific interest (SSSI), as they expose the best inland section of early Jurassic rocks in the country. As such, fossil hunting is limited. However, some fossils may be collected from loose material and the views from the top of the hill are worth the walk. Jurassic, Disused Quarry, Rating: ♦♦

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Cleeve Common

There are many old quarries on the west side of the elevated golf course at Cleeve Hill and on top of the common itself. Fossils are varied and abundant, and plenty can be collected from scree below the faces. However, the in situ rock should not be hammered. Views from the top of Cleeve Common, the highest hill in Gloucestershire, are stunning. Jurassic, Disused Quarries, Rating: ♦♦♦