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Ruislip Bed

30 March 2018

At Down to Earth geological group we learn that an ancient shoreline has been discovered during preliminary diggings in West London – along the line of HS2. A tunnel is being built between Northolt and Old Oak Common but the anomaly was found a little to the west, at Ruislip. The coast line is said to be subtropical – so we are going back to the Paleocene era, which followed on from the K/T boundary event. It ws found 33m below the surface, as a layer of black clay formed from what they say was a wooded and wetland environment. The inference is that this was a shore line – something that geologists have been expecting to find on the edge of the London Basin. The Ruislip Bed is now the official name for the black clay layer. It is thought to coincide with a warm sea covering a large part of southern England (actually, not too different from the preceding Cretaceous). Analysis of the black clay may throw up some information that is not yet obvious – which can only be welcomed. The preliminary work on HS2 involves testing ground conditions along the route of the high speed railway. This also involves looking at the geology in order to spot potential problems such as subsidence. Various methods are involved, from drilling out core samples to radar technology etc. For additional information go to https://www.gov.uk/government/news/hs2-workers-discover-ancient-coastlin…

Winter in eastern England has meant lots of cold windy blasts and generally cold and wet weather, and has affected the coastline from Essex to Yorkshire. For example, at Redcar, the beach was stripped of sediment revealing a petrified forest, while in Norfolk, at Hemsby, a number of houses were evacuated and demolished for safety reasons.

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