Geology Site Account
Coopers End Farm Boulder, DUDDENHOE END, Uttlesford District, TL46493596, General geological site
Site name: Coopers End Farm Boulder
Grid reference: TL 4649 3596
Brief description of site:
A large boulder of Hertfordshire puddingstone by the entrance to a plant hire company at Coopers End Farm, Duddenhoe End.
The boulder of Hertfordshire puddingstone at Coopers End Farm is of large size (1.6 metres x 1.4 metres x 55 cm) and is unusual as the base of the stone is without pebbles and therefore similar to a sarsen stone.
This boulder is a relatively new discovery, found only in 2008.
Hertfordshire Puddingstone was formed around 55 million years ago when the climate of Britain was hot and a layer of pebbles beneath the surface of the ground became cemented with quartz. They are thus very resistant to erosion and have survived the rigours of the Ice Age. They originated in Hertfordshire, hence the name, and were probably carried to Essex by the River Thames when it flowed north of its present course. However, the distribution and abundance of Hertfordshire puddingstone in parts of Essex suggests that some occurrences may have a local Essex source.
The formation of silcretes (which includes sarsens and puddingstones) has been the subject of recent scientific debate. Research has compared the conditions under which sarsens and puddingstones may have been formed with the present day climate in the Kalahari Desert and parts of Australia.
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