Geology Site Account
Maggots End Puddingstone, MANUDEN, Uttlesford District, TL48642767, Potential Local Geological Site
Site name: Maggots End Puddingstone
Grid reference: TL 4864 2767
Brief description of site:
One kilometre north of the village of Manuden, at the junction of the road to Pinchpools, is a one metre (3’3”) square boulder of Hertfordshire puddingstone.
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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Reference: Lucy 2003a
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