Leigh Delamere Quarry
In Southern England, United Kingdom
Size:  (not chosen)
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Cache and dash on the EASTBOUND carriageway of the M4 in Wiltshire (although there is a bridge link from the Westbound carriageway) .... hopefully a welcome change to the usual caches you find along motorways.
It is a very short distance to the cache, which should be suitable for most pushchairs (the north end of the slope is gentler), but unfortunately wheelchairs may struggle with the short grassed slope. Wheelchair users will be able to view the quarry, but will most likely need an able bodied “gopher” to obtain the necessary data from the information board.
Leigh Delamere is a small Wiltshire village on the gently undulating south-eastern slope of the Cotswold Hills. The coordinates are for a disused quarry with rocks that form part of the Middle Jurassic formation known as the Forest Marble, belonging to the Great Oolite Group.
165 million years ago this part of England would have been a seascape located much further south. Since then Europe has been drifting steadily northward. Here at Leigh Delamere, the rock is made up of layers of sand built up layer-upon-layer as a series of under-water dunes or ripples carried along by the ebb and flow of tidal currents. The old quarry face cuts across these banks exposing the complex cross-bedding structures within.
The quarry was last used to provide material for the construction of the M4, but is now hidden away within a quiet garden at the Leigh Delamere Services on the east-bound carriageway of the M4. There is plenty of nearby parking, but we recommend parking at N51 30.711 W002 09.448 which is the Travelodge parking area and can be found by ignoring the first left turn into the services carpark but taking the second left turn and following the hotel signs at the rear services. If you find yourself at the wrong parking area you can quite easily walk through the services building to the earthcache.
Please respect this tranquil place, particularly the guests at the nearby hotel and please do not damage the rock face.
To claim this cache you will need to email us the answers to the following questions, all of which can be answered from visiting the site:
Q1: What type of sand is the Leigh Delamere rock made up of?
Q2: How does the quality of this quarry’s stone compare with that of Bath Stone?
Q3: What do you estimate to be the maximum height of the exposed rockface?
When you log your visit please post a photo of the quarry strata which includes your GPSr or some of your team.
Any logs not complying with the above will be deleted.
(No hints available.)
Last Updated: on 8/9/2017 12:14:32 PM Pacific Daylight Time (7:14 PM GMT)
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum