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Geology Site Account

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Alphamstone Gravel Pits, ALPHAMSTONE , Braintree District, TL872355, General geological site

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Site name: Alphamstone Gravel Pits

Grid reference: TL 872 355

Brief description of site:

Disused pits west of the village formerly showed 6 metres of Thames gravel (Bures Gravel) and 6 metres of chalky boulder clay. The gravel has an abundance of far-travelled exotic pebbles.

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Details

These pits are important because it was here that identification of pebbles possibly originating in North Wales helped geologists piece together the evidence that the Kesgrave Sands and Gravels was laid down by the River Thames and that this river at that time had its headwaters in Snowdonia. The gravel also has an abundance of quartzite (‘bunter’) cobbles from the West Midlands.

In 1975 a fine section of Kesgrave Gravel with overlying boulder clay (with a sharp planar base) was seen at TL 8700 3588.

 

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Reference: Whiteman 1992 (page 46); Hey & Brenchley 1977 (page 221); Rose & Turner 1973

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