Editing Carboniferous of the Wear Valley and Derwent Gorge, County Durham - an excursion

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=== Locality 4, the River Wear Gorge at Durham City ===
 
=== Locality 4, the River Wear Gorge at Durham City ===
  
River Wear Gorge at Durham City; Coal Measures, Westphalian B (Johnson & Richardson, 1990). Access is by path through woodland owned mainly by the Dean and Chapter of Durham and Durham University. There are car parks near Durham city centre, but during the university vacations it is convenient to park in Quarry Heads Lane on the south side of the river [NZ 2730 4154] ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_2.jpg|Figure 15.2]]). Cross the road and walk east towards the New Inn. Before the traffic lights a footpath on the edge of playing fields leads to the wooded banks of the River Wear. Descend towards the river and take the first footpath on the right over the stream by a small bridge. Above the path (A) is the Maudlin Sandstone overlying the thin Maudlin Coal ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_1.jpg|Figure 15.1]]), ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_2.jpg|Figure 15.2]]). Continue on this path to St Oswald's Church where it joins the lower path on the river bank. A short distance back along the lower path, a narrow way leads down the river bank to St Oswald's Well (B) where the Maudlin Sandstone is exposed in a low cliff. The well is at the base of the sandstone and the thin Maudlin Coal can be seen at water level with clay '''seatearth''' below. Interbedded sandstone and shale are exposed under the wellhead. Continue down the river by the lower path to the white bridge (C) where the Maudlin and underlying Low Main Post sandstones can be seen. Behind the bridge a conduit drains the abandoned pumping shaft of Elvet Landsale Colliery, marked by a ring of masonry 50 m south of the bridge. Near the bridge two small faults take the Maudlin Sandstone to the top of the river bank on the west ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_2.jpg|Figure 15.2]]). A short distance further down river the Low Main Post Sandstone can be seen beside the path in an old quarried section. Past the next tributary stream, take the path up the river bank and the first path on the right to the flat wooded top of the bank. Another circle of masonry here marks the site of the shaft of Henry Pit, an early 19th century colliery working the Hutton Coal on the south side of the river. Follow the path to the steep descent down the river bank (D) where the brown Maudlin Sandstone and succession below are well exposed and the Low Main Post can be seen low down on the other side of the gulley. These ancient sandstone quarries date from medieval times; one that worked both the Maudlin and the Low Main Post sandstones can be seen a little further along the path.
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River Wear Gorge at Durham City; Coal Measures, Westphalian B (Johnson & Richardson, 1990). Access is by path through woodland owned mainly by the Dean and Chapter of Durham and Durham University. There are car parks near Durham city centre, but during the university vacations it is convenient to park in Quarry Heads Lane on the south side of the river [NZ 27304 154] ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_2.jpg|Figure 15.2]]). Cross the road and walk east towards the New Inn. Before the traffic lights a footpath on the edge of playing fields leads to the wooded banks of the River Wear. Descend towards the river and take the first footpath on the right over the stream by a small bridge. Above the path (A) is the Maudlin Sandstone overlying the thin Maudlin Coal ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_1.jpg|Figure 15.1]]), ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_2.jpg|Figure 15.2]]). Continue on this path to St Oswald's Church where it joins the lower path on the river bank. A short distance back along the lower path, a narrow way leads down the river bank to St Oswald's Well (B) where the Maudlin Sandstone is exposed in a low cliff The well is at the base of the sandstone and the thin Maudlin Coal can be seen at water level with clay '''seatearth''' below. Interbedded sandstone and shale are exposed under the wellhead. Continue down the river by the lower path to the white bridge (C) where the Maudlin and underlying Low Main Post sandstones can be seen. Behind the bridge a conduit drains the abandoned pumping shaft of Elvet Landsale Colliery, marked by a ring of masonry 50 m south of the bridge. Near the bridge two small faults take the Maudlin Sandstone to the top of the river bank on the west ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_2.jpg|Figure 15.2]]). A short distance further down river the Low Main Post Sandstone can be seen beside the path in an old quarried section. Past the next tributary stream, take the path up the river bank and the first path on the right to the flat wooded top of the bank. Another circle of masonry here marks the site of the shaft of Henry Pit, an early t 9th century colliery working the Hutton Coal on the south side of the river. Follow the path to the steep descent down the river bank (D) where the brown Maudlin Sandstone and succession below are well exposed and the Low Main Post can be seen low down on the other side of the gulley. These ancient sandstone quarries date from mediaeval times; one that worked both the Maudlin and the Low Main Post sandstones can be seen a little further along the path.
  
 
At Prebends' Bridge, the brown Maudlin Sandstone with conspicuous cross-bedding is seen in the track side leading to the bridge with the Maudlin Coal below the overhang at the base of the sandstone. A blocked '''adit''' entrance above the sandstone exposure is a drainage level from another early 19th century colliery. Slightly north, the Prebends' Bridge Fault, '''downthrowing''' 15 m south, crosses the gorge ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_2.jpg|Figure 15.2]]) and steeply dipping sandstone adjacent to the fault can be seen above the path to the right of the drainage level (E). On the north side of the fault all the Low Main Post Sandstone has been quarried at the top of the river bank leaving a hollow below South Street (F). Traces of the Low Main Coal, 0.45 m thick, are found below the quarry. Extensive exposures of shale and sandstone beside the mill (G) on the left bank of the river are near the Brass Thill coals, and the Brass Thill Shell Bed can be found in the shale.
 
At Prebends' Bridge, the brown Maudlin Sandstone with conspicuous cross-bedding is seen in the track side leading to the bridge with the Maudlin Coal below the overhang at the base of the sandstone. A blocked '''adit''' entrance above the sandstone exposure is a drainage level from another early 19th century colliery. Slightly north, the Prebends' Bridge Fault, '''downthrowing''' 15 m south, crosses the gorge ([[:File:YGS_NORTROCK_FIG_15_2.jpg|Figure 15.2]]) and steeply dipping sandstone adjacent to the fault can be seen above the path to the right of the drainage level (E). On the north side of the fault all the Low Main Post Sandstone has been quarried at the top of the river bank leaving a hollow below South Street (F). Traces of the Low Main Coal, 0.45 m thick, are found below the quarry. Extensive exposures of shale and sandstone beside the mill (G) on the left bank of the river are near the Brass Thill coals, and the Brass Thill Shell Bed can be found in the shale.

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