51 localities across the country have been chosen by a panel of expert volunteers as the Best Places where people can see, enjoy and engage with Scotland’s incredible geology.
People flock to Scotland to explore and wonder at the beauty and drama of the landscape, but now everyone can find out more about exactly how these landforms were created and why they look the way they do today. Three billion years in the making, Scotland has been through an amazing geological journey, involving continental collisions, mountain building, deserts, glaciers, and volcanic eruptions. Oceans have come into being and then vanished, as have the dinosaurs that once roamed the land, whilst large-scale volcanic eruptions and intrusions have transformed our landscapes. The processes continue to this day, with erosion of the coasts and mountain regions clearly visible, and the effects of recent glacial periods evident across our small country.
These stories can be ‘read’ in the rocks around us, and now they are being made easily available, thanks to a project developed by the Scottish Geodiversity Forum and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, to encourage the public to engage with the best of Scotland’s Geology. ‘Revealing the stories in the rocks: raising awareness of Scotland's outstanding geoheritage’ is linked to the HLF ‘Stories, Stones and Bones’ programme, and in partnership with the ‘Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology’.
Chair of the Scottish Geodiversity Forum Angus Miller said
‘Initially we intended to identify the 50 Best Places but it proved impossible to narrow it down so we went for 51. When you start to start to engage with Scotland’s geological story it’s easy to see why! The sites identified include some well known favourites alongside a number of hidden gems, spanning the length and breadth of Scotland.’
The 51 Best Places to see Scotland’s Geology will be celebrated at a public launch event at Dynamic Earth in Edinburgh on Saturday 14th October. The drop-in event between 10am and 4pm will involve organisations from across the country providing hands-on activities, displays, information and an art competition to inspire the public and help gain a new appreciation of Scotland’s rocks and landscapes. The official announcement of the 51Best Places will take place at 2pm followed by some short talks on the sites by a range of enthusiasts between 3pm and 4pm.
Scientific Director of Dynamic Earth, Hermione Cockburn said
‘Dynamic Earth is the UK’s only science centre dedicated to the story of our planet. It was inspired by the work of James Hutton, the founder of modern geology so is the perfect place to launch the 51 Best Places to see Scotland’s Geology and we’re looking forward to welcoming visitors, as well as the many organisations taking part.’
The launch event is part of a nationwide Geoheritage Festival taking place throughout October, with events and activities across the country in celebration of our incredible geology.
A full list of all the sites, along with eye-catching images and the dramatic stories behind them, can be found at http://www.scottishgeology.com/best-places/.
For more information about Dynamic Earth visit http://www.dynamicearth.co.uk