A meeting entitled Displaced Terranes in Britain and Ireland was held at Burlington House on 2 November 1988.

This was the third ‘terranes’ meeting held in Britain since the inception of International Geological Correlation Project No 233 ‘Terranes in the Circum-Atlantic Palaeozoic Orogens’, the others having been held at Cardiff in 1986 and Glasgow in 1987. IGCP 233 grew out of IGCP 27 (‘The Caledonide Orogen’), many of the developments promoted by which are recorded within two Special Publications of the Geological Society (Harris et al. 1979; Harris & Fettes1988). Over the last few years research on displaced terranes in the British Caledonides has accelerated, with new data now challenging what have become traditional applications of plate tectonic theory to the British Caledonides. The reports of work in progress on Caledonian terranes, and it was thought appropriate to take advantage of the rapid publication facilities afforded by the Short Papers scheme. Because of the four-page limit on Short Papers, much introductory material has had to be omitted so that we provide here an introduction to the concept of displaced terranes and its applications to British Palaeozoic geology.

Displaced terranes. The essential value of the terrane concept lies in its recognition of the likelihood of large scale lateral fault movements occurring along active plate margins. The concept of terrane tectonics is therefore no more than a fuller appreciation of the kinematic implications of plate tectonic theory. The impact of this recognition upon our perception of geotectonic processes in general, and the

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