Heritage Day Event with Professor Maurice Tucker- Free Event!
Around 320 million years ago Bath was situated near the equator and the area was covered by hot and steamy swamps and dense forests. Therein lived fish, amphibians and numerous insects. Fossil plants, like giant ferns and horsetails, with extensive root systems, gave rise to peat which eventually after burial formed coal.
The coal was exploited from the 17th until mid-19th century near Twerton and Newton St Loe in several coal mines reaching 250 metres depth. Farther south in the Radstock-district there were more than 100 pits, with the last closing in 1973.
The evidence of former mining activity is seen in the old tips, steep round hills, now vegetated, such as the prominent one near Midsomer Norton, looking like a volcano. This talk explores the environment of this Carboniferous time when the coal measures were deposited and giant dragonflies flitted about.
Maurice Tucker is a leading British sedimentologist, specialising in limestones. From 1993-2011 he was Professor of Geological Sciences at Durham University and from 1998 – 2011 Master of University College, Durham. Currently, Maurice is working at the School of Earth Sciences at the University of Bristol.