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Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Salisbury Plain -- getting at the evidence

Acknowledgement: Army Training Range site

One of the reasons why the surface geology and geomorphology of Salisbury Plain is not all that well known is of course down to the presence of extensive tracts of land used for military training.  The military ranges are -- and always were -- a mixed blessing, and most of us would prefer to see a world in which they are not needed.  But -- apart from the areas where the ground surface is smashed up by tanks and other heavy vehicles or blasted by explosives -- much of the land surface is left in a more or less natural state, with abundant locations in which wildlife is able to thrive. 

Many of us would dearly like to know what sarsens (and bluesones?) there may be, littering the land surface inside these ranges, and we would like to know what clues there may be to glacial and periglacial processes........

2 comments:

TONY said...

Brian, you are probably aware of the MOD sponsored Conservation Groups that exist on Salisbury Plain. For instance, the Imber Conservation Group is for Salisbury Plain Training Area(West)
the area from Warminster and Westbury in the west across to the A360 through Tilshead in the east.

The Imber Conservation Group (ICG) has about 150 members. Due to the diversity of conservation interests on the area,there are about a dozen sub-groups. These include, as well as a variety of specialist nature conservation groups, an archaeology sub-group. There is not, however, a geological sub-group, which, in view of the increased interest in the issue of glaciation in relation to Stonehenge and its wider landscape (including, for instance, Boles Long Barrow near Warminster), might appeal to some potential volunteers, were it to be formed.

The Chairman of the overall Imber Conservation Group is Lieutenant Colonel (Retd) Mike Jelf, FRGS.
Email:ro2pubs@hqinfantry.co.uk
mikejelf@aol.com

It is based at Land Warfare Centre, Warminster BA12 0DJ

BRIAN JOHN said...

Thank you Tony -- useful info. I was a member of the Castlemartin Conservation Group for some years -- keeping an eye on the wildlife (and geology) interests of the tank firing range there. Interesting work!

A couple of years ago I did have some correspondence with some army personnel re specific questions, and found that there is quite a lot on the record. I will have a look back at some of these sources.

I wonder whether Isobel Geddes and some other local geologists would be interested in starting Geology sub-group? There are some folks around who are very knowledgeable.....