We welcome the comments of Smith and Rippon (2021) about our map of vitrinite reflectance data derived from Carboniferous coal in Britain. The essence of their contribution is that our map is based upon a limited database (103 samples). We are well aware that data is available for other localities, at a range of depths within mines, and in some cases with details of statistical accuracy. Smith and Rippon conclude that the data available is too extensive to make it possible to produce a summary map. That is possibly why, despite the heritage of coal studies in Britain, such a map has not been published. However, the scale at which we have resolved variations in the reflectance values, simplified further in Figure 1, allows realization of the tremendous educational potential in the data. Our purpose was to produce a map, and we have employed a data base appropriate to do so, rather than assemble a national data base, which is the responsibility of others.

You do not currently have access to this article.