Excursion to Minehead and district, West Somerset. June 20th to 24th, 1913 - Geologists' Association excursion

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Link to Album and Photograph index[edit]

To view photograph album:

Geologists' Association Carreck Archive. The Reader Geological Photographs Long Excursions 1913.

To view detailed index of photographs taken on this excursion:

T W Reader geological photographs, long excursions 1913 - index, GA 'Carreck Archive'

Geologists' Association Circular No. 156. Session 1912–1913. p. 6–8,10[edit]

Excursion to Minehead and district, West Somerset. June 20th to 24th, 1913 - Geologists' Association excursion (Transcribed from: GA Circular No. 156. Session 1912–1913. p. 6–8,10 )[edit]



RAILWAY ARRANGEMENTS.—The official party travel from Paddington (G.W.R) by 4.15 p.m. train on Friday, June 20th, due Minehead 8.55. Take ordinary week-end tickets, 18s. 9d. Restaurant car on train.

HOTEL ARRANGEMENTS. — Headquarters, The Hopcott Hotel, Minehead, Terms, 6s. 6d. per day, including sandwiches for lunch.

Members should write direct to hotel to engage rooms, and also advise Excursion Secretary, enclosing stamped, addressed postcard for acknowledgment.

Saturday, June 21st. Blue Anchor and St. Audries[edit]


Breakfast 8.15 a.m. Leave Minehead Station at 9.25 a.m. for Blue Anchor Station.

The principal object of this Excursion is to study the classic sections of Upper Keuper, Rhӕtic and Lower Lias in the neighbourhood of Watchet.

The Rhӕtic Series comprises the following subdivisions:

Upper Rhӕtic Watchet Beds 7 ft. 7 in., at Blue Anchor.
White Lias 20 ft. 8 in., at Queen Camel.
White Rhӕtic 7 ft. 8 in., at St. Audries Slip.
Lower Rhӕtic Black Shales 32 ft., at Lilstock.
Sully Beds 13 ft. 1 in., at Blue Anchor.

At Blue Anchor Point the members will descend to the beach, and attention will be called to certain faults and to the anticlinal arrangement of the beds in the headland.

The Watchet Beds will be pointed out, near the top of the cliff, with the local representative of the White Lias below. Neither these subdivisions, nor the " Upper Rhӕtic," nor the Black Shales, are very accessible, but owing to their anticlinal arrangement here they are found again in the foreshore, where the sequence from the Sully Beds to the Pleurophorus-Bed may be most readily examined.

Ample time will be allowed for collecting from the deposits between the Sully Beds and the Pleurophorus-Bed, because they contain a very interesting assemblage of fossils, some—such as Pteromya crowcombeia, Moore—being very rare elsewhere. The Bone-Bed is a massive grit, and has yielded Ceratodus teeth. The Pleurophorus-Bed is practically made up of the valves of Pleurophorus elongatus, Moore.

The workings for gypsum will be visited, after which the members will walk along the shore as far as the trackway leading up to the 'line-kilns.

Between here and Watchet is the place where Prof. Boyd Dawkins found the teeth of Microlestes in the "Grey Marls" (Sully Beds).

Members will be able to obtain what refreshments they require in Watchet at 1 p.m., or somewhat later.

From Watchet the walk will be continued via Doniford, where there are some interesting gravel-beds ("The Geology of the Quantock Hills, etc.," 1908, pp. 78–79), to St. Audries Park.

By kind permission of Lord St. Audries they will be permitted to walk through the Park down to the Bay, where they will study the fine sections of Keuper, Rhӕtic and Lower Lias.

Total walking distance about six miles. Railway fares about 10d.

Leave Williton at 6,25 p.m., arrive Minehead 6.55 p.m.

Dinner at 7.30 p.m.

Monday, June 23rd. Lilstock and the Northern end of the Quantock Hills.[edit]

DIRECTORS: L. RICHARDSON and THE PRESIDENT. Breakfast 8.15 a.m. Leave Minehead Station at 9.25 a.m. for Watchet.

Drive from Watchet via West Quantockshead and Kilton to Lilstock. From the village walk down to the bay.

In the cliffs bordering the bay are fine sections of Keuper, Rhӕtic, and Lower Lias rocks. The sections have been described in detail by the Director, but special attention may be called to the fact that fossils are not infrequent in the top portion of the "Grey-Marls"—the Sully Beds.

Ample time will be allowed for collecting and for photographing the sections. Refreshments may be obtained in Holford about 1 p.m.

Holford is the centre of some of the most picturesque scenery in the Quantock Hills.

The afternoon will be devoted to the Devonian Beds and the exploration of the combes.

Walk across Quantocks from Holford to Stogumber.

Tea may be obtained in Holford about 4.30 p.m.

Depart Stogumber 6.11 p.m., arrive Minehead 6.55 p.m. Dinner 1.30 p.m. Railway fares about 1s. 9d.; cost of drive about 1s. 9d.

Tuesday, June 24th.[edit]


Breakfast 8.30 a.m. Take 10.46 a.m. train to Watchet with luggage.

Visit Cleeve Abbey, a former Cistercian Abbey, portions of which are in excellent preservation, and give further attention to local geology.

Return to London by 4.35 p.m. from Watchet, due 8.40 p.m. Paddington. During the excursion there will be opportunites of visiting Dunster village and Dunkerry Beacon on Exmoor.


Geological Survey Index Map, Sheet 11, 4 miles to 1 inch. Price 2s. 6d.

Geological Survey Map, New Series, Sheet 295. Price 1s. 6d.

Guide Books: Minehead, "Homeland Handbocks." Price 6d.

The Quantock Hills, "Homeland Handbooks." Price 1s.

1860. DAWKINS, PROF. W. B.—"On the Rhӕtic Beds and White Lias of Western and Central Somerset; and on the Discovery of a new Fossil Mammal in the Grey Marlstones below the Bone-Bed." Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc., vol. xvi, pp. 396-412.

1873. BRISTOW, H. W. and ETHERIDGE, R.—Vertical Sections (Geol. Surv.), Sheets 46 and 47.

1873. ETHERIDGE, R.—" Notes on the Physical Structure of the Watchet Area, and the Relation of the Secondary Rocks to the Devonian Series of West Somerset." Proc. Cotteswold Nat. F. C., vol. vi, p. 35.

1873. WINWOOD, REV. H. H.—" Devonian Fossils from the Sandstones in the N.E. of the Quantocks." Proc. Bath Nat. Hist; and Antiq. Field Club, p. 24.

1893. WOODWARD, H. B.—"The Jurassic Rocks of Britain," vol. iii. " The Lias of England and Wales (Yorkshire excepted)." Mem. Geol. Surv.

1896. WINWOOD, REV. H. H.—"Notes on the Trias, Rhmtic, and Lias of West Somerset.". Proc. Geol. Assoc., vol. xiv, p. 378 (Part 9, 1s.).

1896 " Report of Excursion to West Somerset and North Devon." Proc. Geol. Assoc., vol. xiv, p. 433 (Part 10, 1s.).

1908. USSHER, W. A. E.—"The Geology of the Quantock Hills and of Taunton and Bridgwater." Mem. Geol. Surv. Price 2s.

1911. RICHARDSON, L.—"The Rhmtic and Contiguous Deposits of West Mid, and part of East Somerset." Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc., vol. lxvii, pp, 1-74, and plates i-iv.