Saturday, 8 September 2018

Summer on the Southwell Trail - Part 9

As the trail moves from late August into September there are a few hints of autumn in the trees and  landscape. The summer greens are losing their vibrancy as the leaves, perhaps prematurely, turn towards yellow. There are also plenty of berries on the hawthorn trees:

In addition to the red haws (hawthorn berries) are plenty of rose hips on the dog rose bushes. I also revisited the wild pear tree on the trail where the fruit has now started to mature:

Now the harvest has been completed the fields next to the trail are looking very autumnal: 

Some of the leaves on the horse chestnut trees have already fallen with the rest looking very dry:

Lastly, my favourite ash trees are showing signs of changing colour or may be that is wishful thinking - autumn is my favourite season for photography and as you may guess... I can't wait!

Nash Point, South Wales (August 2018)

These are selection of photographs taken on the Glamorgan Heritage Coast, at Nash Point in South Wales. The weather wasn’t ideal for landscape photography so I turned to the wonderful geology for some close-up images.

The sediments at Nash Point are part of the Lias group which is interbedded limestone and mudstone from the Jurassic period (about 200 millions old). The rocks were deposited at a time when the region which included Britain was closer to the equator and the climate was Mediterranean-like with warm shallow seas. Carbonates, e.g. skeletal fragments of marine organisms, were deposited as limestone beds particularly in the lower Blue Lias Formation which can be seen in the cliff at Nash Point (1).

Interestingly, whilst researching more about the rocks I found a link between the cliffs at Nash Point and my home area in the East Midlands. The Lias Group outcrop actually extends from the Dorset coast through the East Midlands to Yorkshire and I understand that limestone from these rocks was used in the building of Newark Castle, Newark-on-Trent, which dates to the 12th century (2):

The following set of images provides some context for the close up studies. The cliffs tower above the beach and are almost vertical in places. Further along the coast some significant rock falls can be seen:

The rock pavement below the cliffs provided an array of different shapes, patterns, colours, and textures:

Finally, a few record shots of the lighthouse at Nash Point which was built in the 1830's from limestone that was quarried from the beach below (3):

(1)There is a great app called EarthViewer which shows how the continents have shifted over geological time. Present day countries, like the UK, can be mapped over different periods which helps to visualise the conditions when rocks like the Lias Group were formed.

(2) Historic England’s description of the materials used to build Newark Castle includes:

MATERIALS: the early-C12 work is of lias limestone rubble, or rag-stone, with quoins, facings, and ashlar work of limestone. The late-C13/early-C14 work, while using or re-using limestone, also utilised skerry sandstone, quarried locally from Winkburn or Maplebeck.

(3) More information about the Nash Point lighthouse can be found at

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

Summer on the Southwell Trail - Part 8

There are few better sights than low summer sun on the landscape. It has a richness and intensity that is not seen at other times in the year - or so it seems. This small set was taken over a 10 minute period just before sunset in early August: