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Brentwood & Billericay Talk - Geology of the Essex Coast

Posted: Wednesday 24th January 2018 by Brentwood and Billericay Local Group

Walton on the Naze CliffsWalton on the Naze Cliffs

The impact on Essex by Volcanoes, tropical seas, glaciers, earthquakes and elephants.

Bill George from the Essex Field Club in his intriguingly entitled talk ‘volcanoes, tropical seas, glaciers, earthquakes and elephants’ took us on a whistle stop tour of the Essex coast, which, as we all know is the longest in the country! We learned that our ancestors have been collecting fossils since at least the 1200s - indeed it is believed that the Romans collected fossils. The cliffs and shores yield up fossils of not just shells which we might recognise on our beaches today, but sharks teeth, turtle shells, elephant, rhino and mammoth and the remains of old forests now submerged. We saw how the cliffs and beaches have provided resources such as chalk and concrete stone used for building in London and how the Victorians tidied and shored up the constantly eroding cliffs to make promenade gardens. An earthquake in 1884 damaged 1000 houses and caused £1,000 million damage. We will all be looking at our cliffs and beaches with a more informed and interested eye after this thought provoking talk.

Barbara Beckett

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