Lecture: The History of the Oil Industry in Southern England

Speaker: Simon Kay, Oil and Gas Geologist

Entry Fee

Members: Free

Visitors: £2 donation

Date and Time

19:00 -


Virtual Talk via Zoom

Lecture Description

Simon Kay moved to Bradford on Avon from Scotland seven years ago. He is a professional geologist, and worked in the oil industry for many years. He also worked as an environmental engineer, cleaning up contaminated sites in Alaska.

This talk will address the history of the oil industry in Southern England. People are often surprised at the long history of oil extraction onshore in the UK, some not realising that we have many productive onshore oil and gas fields. Oil was extracted by digging oil shales and retorting to recover oil as long ago as the 1850s in Dorset and in Scotland. Just over one hundred years ago, in October 1918, Britain’s first oil well was drilled at Hardstoft in Derbyshire. Since then around 2,000 wells have been drilled and today there are 120 sites producing oil onshore, the largest of which is in Dorset. Although there are not (yet) any oil or gas fields in the Bath area, we are not far from many fields, big and small, in Southern England.

To register please email: [email protected]

Free to Bath Geological Society members. Non-member £2 donation

Practical steps to join the lecture:

  • You will need to have a free programme called Zoom on a computer / tablet or smart phone. Zoom can be downloaded here: https://zoom.us/download


  • You will need to register by email: [email protected]
  • We will then email a pass code that will allow you to join the meeting.
  • Talks are free for Bath Geological Society members. £2 donation requested from Non-member visitors and guests.
  • Members will be automatically registered to join for free.

Zoom Practice Session

  • As Zoom may be new to some of some, it is proposed that a practice session on Thursday 28th May at 7pm to allow participants to check that they have Zoom set up and a familiarisation tutorial to understand the controls in Zoom (e.g. how to raise your hand, type comments or adjust the speaker or camera settings) will take place a week prior to the lecture.

On the evening of the Lecture

  • On Thursday June 4th you will be able to join the lecture waiting room from 6.45pm. We will ensure that everyone is admitted to the lecture by 7.00pm
  • During the lecture, your audio will be on mute. This avoids unnecessary back ground noise, interference and distractions for the speaker.
  • There will be a short Q&A session after the lecture. Please raise your hand to ask a question and your audio will be turned on.
  • We aim to close the meeting by 8:00pm.