Tag: Wales

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Trefil Quarry

Situated just outside Trefil, the highest village in Wales, this is a former limestone quarry, which once supplied the Sirhowy Ironworks and contains the remains of a Carboniferous coral reef.Carboniferous, Disused Quarry, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Upper Gilwern Quarry

On the edge of the Brecon Beacons, Upper Gilwern Hill is a site long known for its well-preserved and complete trilobites. The hill is made up of rocks from the Lower and Middle Ordovician, and the privately owned quarry is accessible to parties staying at the onsite Shepherd’s Hut self catering accommodation. The trilobite fossils here are plentiful and the chances of finding a good number is very high. Ordovician, Private Quarry, Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

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Abereiddy Bay

Abereiddy is the best and easiest place in the UK to find graptolites. It is also an outstanding place where you can see and photograph in situ graptolites, crammed into the sloping bedrocks. Although this site is a SSSI (so hammering the bedrock is strictly prohibited), there is no reason why you would want to disturb the bedrock. The foreshore is full of rocks that can be picked up without tools and contain better specimens than those in the bedrock. Ordovician, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

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Southerndown

Southerndown is a Jurassic coastal location that closely resembles the classic Lias sites of Somerset. The early Blue Lias is mostly thickly bedded limestones, with thin shale bands. The limestones are full of bivalves, with occasional ammonites. They sometimes also yield reptile remains and fish. Jurassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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Little Wern

Tucked away in the fold of a valley near Llandrindod Wells, in Mid Wales, sits Little Wern holiday cottage. The cottage has its own small quarry, which is solely open to visitors staying there. And what’s more, it is stuffed full of trilobite remains. Ordovician, Private Quarry, Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

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Cwm Craig Ddu

Cwm Craig Ddu is a roadside section found to the east of Llangammarch Wells, along the B4519. A disused quarry (now overgrown) is also present on the hilltop, but fossils can really only now be found along the cutting. Early fossil plants and small bivalves can be collected here. This site is a SSSI, so hammering the bedrock is strictly prohibited. Silurian, Roadside Cutting, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Bettws

This small section of stream cutting in the middle of nowhere is worth a visit to look for trilobite remains. Fossils are not particularly frequent, but, with some careful searching, you should find trilobite pieces, as well as graptolites. Ordovician, Stream cutting, Rating: ♦♦

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Craig-Y-Fro

This disused quarry is situated along the main A470 through the Brecon Beacons. The quarry also contains a waterfall, which keeps the faces clean. There is strictly a no hammering allowed, due to SSSI rules and because the site falls within the Brecon Beacons National Park. However, loose material can be collected from, especially at the base of the waterfall and from the stream running through the quarry. Devonian, Disused Quarry, Rating: ♦♦

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Penarth

Penarth is the most popular location in Wales for fossil collectors. This is down to both the site being very rich in fossils, together being a major built up area. This site can be over collected but you still should come home with some finds. Jurassic, Triassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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Caim

The scenery of the coast north of Caim is beautiful. Moreover, excellent fossil corals can be observed in situ and found as wave-rounded pebbles here. Brachiopods are especially abundant. Carboniferous, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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Great Ormes Head

A massive headland north of Llandudno, Great Ormes Head, is carved out of Carboniferous limestone. Numerous natural exposures can be examined as well as old quarry faces. A whole day can be spent exploring here. Carboniferous, Disused Quarry, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Halkyn

Surrounding the massive working limestone quarry just outside Halkyn are many smaller disused workings and old piles of waste material. In places, good quality brachiopods, corals and crinoidal limestone can be found.Carboniferous, Disused Quarry, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Llangollen

Llangollen is Carboniferous Limestone scenery heaven. About a kilometre and a half north of the town, the Eglwyseg Escarpment presents some really fantastic views. What’s more, among the huge amount of scree that covers its scarp slope, fossil brachiopods and corals can be found. Carboniferous, Scree Slope, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Gallt Yr Ancr Hill

From the part of the Glyndwr’s Way walk that passes through the woods on the hill called Gallt yr Ancr west of Meifod, fossiliferous sandstone blocks can be searched for fossils. When split, these can yield excellent brachiopods. Ordovician, Disused Quarry, Rating: ♦♦

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West Angle Bay

West Angle Bay is eroded out of Carboniferous Limestone, which is packed with crinoids. It is an excellent location to take children to – there is a nice sandy beach, a cafe and public conveniences. Carboniferous, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

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Marloes Sands

Marloes Sands is a stunningly beautiful location managed by the National Trust. The scenery is fantastic, the geology is breath-taking and there are many fossils to find, including corals, brachiopods, trilobites and much more. Silurian, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

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Presipe

The strata exposed at Presipe are a delight to behold and the various coves are very beautiful, if nearly impossible to reach except at low tide. Trace fossils are also present in certain layers. Devonian, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

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Freshwater East

The bay at Freshwater East is a great location for the whole family. The sandy beach is ideal for children and, as it is so large, it is unlikely to become crowded even in the height of summer. Fossils are fairly abundant and are easy to find. Carboniferous, Devonian, Silurian, Ordovician, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Whitesands Bay

This popular location among holiday makers has an expansive sandy beach with Cambrian shales outcropping on its north side. There are few fossils to be found, but the beach is an excellent place to take the family. Cambrian, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦

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Porthgain

The bay at Porthgain is eroded out of Ordovician shales, with the headlands on either side of it composed of more resistant igneous rocks. Although huge piles of shale can be found on the clifftop, fossils are sparse. Ordovician, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦

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Llantwit Major

Llantwit Major is an excellent place in Wales for Jurassic fossils. The huge cliffs yield a wide range of fossils and unique is the large amount of marine life, for example corals and giant brachiopods and gastropods. Jurassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Lavernock

A mixture of Jurassic and Triassic rocks can be seen at Lavernock. Whilst the Jurassic rocks yield ammonites and mollusk’s, the Triassic Rhaetian bone bed similar to Aust yields fish and reptile remains. Jurassic, Triassic, Cliffs and Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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Gileston

The foreshore at Gileston is full of Jurassic Boulders. Many of these contain shells and ammonites. This is an ideal location for along who likes splitting rocks on the foreshore or families where children can also collect fossils too. Jurassic, Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦