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Situated in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty,Wenlock edge is a dramatic wooded limestone escarpment, which extends from the Ironbridge gorge to Craven Arms.
An escarpment forms when harder rock resists erosion and forms higher ground. Limestone is a sedimentry rock made up of calcium carbonate of which there are many degrees of purity with Wenlock's being amongst the most pure. It was formed from the remains of sea creatures, salt water and crushed shells. Wenlock edge is know internationally as geologists from around the world refer to rocks of the era as "Wenlockian". Around 425 million years ago Wenlock was 25/30 degrees south of the equator and moving Northwards.
Crinoids, Trilobites and Brachiopod fossils have all been found here. These creatures lived in warm sub-tropical seas and were reef dwellers. The nearby Knowle quarry has one of the best examples of a patch reef to be found anywhere. The reefs were created during the Silurian period which was a relatively warm and peaceful period of evolution for this area following the harsh conditions of the preceding ice-age, sea levels had risen and life flourished. The fossilised remains of the coral reefs and the plants and animals that lived on them became with time the building blocks of the limestone on which the Wenlock edge of today is made.
There is a long history of quarrying on this site, for centuries people have been using the limestone to make mortar for building and as a soil improver in agriculture.
The limekilns nearby was where the limestone was burnt and gives us a glimpse of our recent industrial past of which this area was at the forefront of and it shows how important limestone was and still is so important to us.
The above co-ordinates will take you to a permissive footpath that over looks Lea quarry, nearby are a cairn and a sculpture. These hold the answers to the set questions.
Can you count how many stuctures that make up the sculpture.
And on the cairn can you say what kind of sea is quoted in the verse and what is swaying beneath it?
What colour are the limestone fragments you can see around the cairns?
If you could please e-mail me your answers through my profile along with a photograph if you wish of the cairn, sculpture or quarry posted with your log entry, thank you.
I would like to thank the Warden of Wenlock edge and Bardon Aggregates for allowing this Earthcache to be placed.
Please note sturdy boots or shoes are recommended as it can get muddy! Also some steps are on the pathway leading to the site.
Gates onto the car park are closed at dusk.
(No hints available.)
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Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum