Bristol, Mendips and Forest of Dean
C. N. Waters, R. A. Waters, N. S Jones, C. J. Cleal, J. R. Davies, 2011. "Bristol, Mendips and Forest of Dean", A Revised Correlation of Carboniferous Rocks in the British Isles, C. N. Waters, I. D. Somerville, N. S. Jones, C. J. Cleal, J. D. Collinson, R. A. Waters, B. M. Besly, M. T. Dean, M. H. Stephenson, J. R. Davies, E. C. Freshney, D. I. Jackson, W. I. Mitchell, J. H. Powell, W. J. Barclay, M. A. E. Browne, B. E. Leveridge, S. L. Long, D. McLean
Download citation file:
Carboniferous rocks within this region occur in a series of inliers, many occurring in the cores of periclines and anticlines. The Tournaisian and Visean strata comprise ramp carbonate successions (Avon and Pembroke Limestone groups), which show similarities with equivalent strata to the west in South Wales (Chapter 5). The main outcrops, broadly from south to north, are the Cannington Park inlier and Mendips, Weston-super-Mare, Broadfield Down, Bristol and Avon, Cromhall and Chepstow to Monmouth (Fig. 19). Namurian strata are present only in the south of the region, in the Bristol and Somerset coalfields. Little information is available on the nature of these strata, though they show some similarities to the fluvial and deltaic successions of the Marros Group of South Wales (Chapter 5). Westphalian strata are present in all the coalfields, broadly from south to north, the Somerset, Bristol, Severn, Forest of Dean and Newent coalfields (Fig. 19). Fluvio-lacustrine deposits (South Wales Coal Measures Group) are present only in the Somerset, Bristol and the south-eastern part of the Nailsea coalfields. These coalfields are laterally contiguous beneath Mesozoic strata. Deposition was also probably laterally contiguous with the concealed Berkshire Coalfield (Chapter 7). It has not been possible to demonstrate lateral continuity with the South Wales Coalfield (Chapter 5). Strata of this facies are absent from the Newent, Forest of Dean and Severn coalfields and the Cannington Park inlier along the axis of the syn-Westphalian Usk Anticline.
Figures & Tables
The report revises and expands upon the 1976 and 1978 publications for the Dinantian and Silesian, respectively, combining them into a single account of British and Irish Carboniferous stratigraphy. The need to update the two Special Reports reflects the considerable advances in Carboniferous geology over the last 30 years. The report covers developments in international chronostratigraphy and incorporates wholesale reassessments of British lithostratigraphy. A huge volume of biostratigraphical information has been published over recent decades and the report summarizes the key information.
Carboniferous rocks have long been of economic importance, but it is the search for hydrocarbons, in its infancy at the time of the previous reports, which has greatly increased our understanding of Carboniferous successions offshore and at depth, particularly in southern and eastern England.