Lecture: Geological Evolution of Gower, South Wales

Speaker: Dr. Geraint Owen, Senior Lecturer in Physical Geography and Geology, Swansea University

Entry Fee

Members: Free

Visitors: £5.00

Date and Time

19:00 -

Location

Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution, 16-18 Queen Square, Bath BA1 2HN


Lecture Description

The Gower peninsula, west of Swansea, was deservedly designated Britain’s first Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in 1956. Its magnificent landscape ranges from the suburbs of Swansea in the east, through cliff-lined sandy bays along the south coast, to the vast sweep of sands and tidal island of Worms Head at Rhossili in the west, and the salt marshes and mud flats of the Loughor estuary in the north. Inland, an agricultural patchwork of fields is interrupted by open common land and hilly moorland. Most of this scenic splendour can be explained by the underlying geology, a tightly folded succession of Old Red Sandstone and Carboniferous rocks. The final details of the landscape were shaped by glaciations in the Quaternary, in the last of which, about 20,000 years ago, the ice reached a southern limit across the peninsula, displacing people who had set up home here. This talk will outline the geological evolution of Gower, relating the landscape to the underlying geology and interpreting the succession of geological events in terms of changing environmental conditions through 400 million years of the Earth’s history.

The talk will be in advance of a West Country Geology field meeting to Gower on 19th October.



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