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Geological conservation

We have a rich and varied geological heritage, spanning almost 500 million years of Earth’s history. There are numerous disused and active quarries, road cuttings and river cliffs that provide invaluable material that enables us to understand the geology of the area in which we live.

​Geological conservation

We have a rich and varied geological heritage, spanning almost 500 million years of Earth’s history. There are numerous disused and active quarries, road cuttings and river cliffs that provide invaluable material that enables us to understand the geology of the area in which we live.

SSSIs and RIGS

Many of these sites have been designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) for their nationally or even internationally important geological or geomorphological features. There are also more than 50 Regionally Important Geological Sites (RIGS). We believe there could be many more that have not been discovered yet. RIGS contain geological features regarded as being locally or regionally important. While they are not protected under law, they are protected under Policy L8 of the South Gloucestershire Local Plan.

Geology interpretation project

Officers from the Planning and Environment Section of South Gloucestershire Council have been working in partnership with the Avon RIGS Group and the Bristol Regional Environmental Records Centre to promote important geological sites in South Gloucestershire to produce a series of information panels featuring fascinating and dramatic images of the area’s geological past.

Information panels

A series of eight panels have been designed and installed around South Gloucestershire at the following locations:

  • Aust cliff
  • Brandy Bottom, Shortwood
  • Chipping Sodbury car park
  • Codrington quarry
  • Cromhall village
  • Huckford quarry
  • Slickstone quarry, near Cromhall
  • Wick Golden Valley

This two-year project, which was funded through the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund (administered by Natural England), has produced a range of geological interpretive material which will be of interest to schools and visitors in South Gloucestershire.

Booklet

A booklet entitled ‘The Story of Geology and Landscape in South Gloucestershire’ is available at libraries and tourist information centres or to download.

Website

Visit the Avon Rigs Group website to gain greater detail on the geology and landscape of South Gloucestershire and information on the Avon RIGS Group.

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