Amble and District
     Local History





The Geology of the Country around
Rothbury, Amble and Ashington

A. Fowler, M.A., B.Sc.

Crown Copyright Reserved
      The accompanying Memoir deals with two one-inch maps, taken together for convenience of description. By far the greater part falls within Sheet 9, a small coastwise extension accounting for Sheet 10. The original survey on the six-inch scale was executed by W. Topley, under the superintendence of W. Howell, the District Surveyor, and these maps were issued between 1870 and 1880. The one-inch sheets were issued later, Sheet 10 in 1882, and Sheet 91 in 1895. Three sheets of Vertical Sections (Nos. 54, 55 and 64) also cover much of the Coal Measure area : these were published between 1874 and 1878.
      The six-inch revision was carried out between 1922 and 1926. Mr. Maden completed a broad strip across the centre of one-inch Sheet 9 before his death in 1927, but subsequently this was checked by Mr. Fowler, who is responsible for practically the whole work, Messrs. Carruthers and Anderson only taking very small areas along the northern fringe of Sheet 9. All these six-inch maps have been published on the New Meridian, save for those in the less important country in the west of Sheet 9, manuscript copies of which may be consulted in the Geological Survey Offices in London and Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Revised colour-printed editions of the two one-inch maps were issued in 1934.
      The Memoir has been written by Mr. Fowler, Mr. Carruthers acting as editor. Minor alterations and additions are fairly numerous amongst the Lower Carboniferous rocks, but the chief feature undoubtedly is the detailed treatment of the Coal Measure section, made possible by the generous assistance everywhere accorded by the mining companies : the two leading firms, the Ashington Coal Company and Broomhill Collieries, have been particularly helpful.
Geological Survey Office,
Exhibition Road,
South Kensington,
London, S.W.7.1935
Rothbury and the Simonside Escarpments


  Physical Features, 1. Geological Grouping, 3. General Structure and Rock Features, 4.  
  Cementstone Group : Introduction, 6. High and Low Trewhitt, Flotterton and Cartington, 7. Whitton and Newton, 9. Great Tosson to Bickerton, 11. Chester Hope to Bickerton, 12.  
  Fell Sandstone Group : Introduction, 13. Distribution and characteristics, 13.  
  Scremerston Coal Group : Introduction, 17. Debdon, 17. Chartners, Spylaw and Lordenshaw, 20.  
  The Limestone Group : Introduction, 22. Rothbury and Chartners, 23. Newton-on-the-Moor to Overgrass Mill, 24. Embleton Stead to Healey Cote, 26. Pauperhaugh, Forestburn Gate, Wards Hill and Todburn, 26. Fallowlees to Netherwitton, 32. Greenleighton, Hartington, Longwitton, 36. Hart Burn, 40. Stanton and Pigdon, 42. The River Font below Stantonfence, 46. Longhorsley, 48. Hazon, 49. Mere Burn, 53. Swarland, Lowframlington, Felton, 54.  
  Introduction, 57. Area north of the Causey Park Dyke, 58. Area south of the Causey Park Dyke, 59.  
  Introduction, 61. Cottingwood Common, 62. Pegswood, 66. Ashington, Woodhorn and Newbiggin, 68. Longhirst to Ellington, 78. Ulgham, Widdrington Station, Highthorn, 81. Cresswell and Lynemouth, 88. (a) Measures up to the High Main Coal, 88. (b) Measures above the High Main Coal, 90. Widdrington, 92. Broomhill and Hauxley, 97. (a) Broomhill, 99. (b) Newburgh, 104. (c) Hauxley, Radcliffe and Togston Barns, 108. Togston, 114. Amble, 114. Note on the Coal Measure correlations, 117.  
  The Whin Sill : Introduction, 120. Distribution, 120. Dykes : Introduction, 121. Quartz-dolerite Dykes, 121. The Acklington Dyke, 123.  
  Introduction, 128. Boulder Clay, 128. Sand and Gravels, 130. Other Deposits, 131. 'Dry Valleys', 132. Glacial Striae, 134. Post-Glacial and Recent Deposits, 134. Fresh-water Alluvia, 134. Blown Sand : Storm Beaches, 135. `Buried Forest.' 135.  
  Lead Ore, 136. Iron Ore, 137. Coal, 137. Fireclays, 139. Building Stone, 139. Lime, 140. Road-metal, Sand, Gravel and Clay, 140. Soil and Agriculture, 141. Water Supply, 141.  
PLATE I Rothbury and the Simonside Escarpments (Photo : Geol. Surv. Coll. A. 4509) Frontispiece
PLATE II 1.Gorge in Fell Sandstone, Thrum Mill, Rothbury (Photo : Geol. Surv. Coll. A. 4502) 15
  2.'Algal Reef ' in Glebe Limestone, Cementstone Group, The Glebe, Rothbury (Photo : Geol. Surv. Coll. A.4503) 15
PLATE III 1. Massive pebbly sandstone, Rothley Crags (Photo :Geol. Surv. Coll. A. 4520) 39
  2. False-bedding in sandstone, Rothley Crags (Photo : Geol. Surv. Coll. A. 4522) 39
PLATE IV 1. Great Limestone and covering beds, Whitehouse Quarries (Photo : Geol. Surv. Coll. A. 4517) 120
  2. Columnar face of the Whin Sill, Ewesley Quarries (Photo : Geol. Surv. Coll. A. 4516) 120
PLATE V. 1. Late-Glacial 'cut' at Selby's Cove, Simonside Hills (Photo : Geol. Surv. Coll. A. 4505) 133
  2. Intake of Late-Glacial channel, Haredene (Photo : Geol. Surv. Coll. A. 4518) 133
FIG. 1. Index-map showing the boundaries of the Six-inch Quarter- sheets (New Meridian) 2
FIG. 2. Comparative Vertical Sections of the Upper Limestone Group 51
FIG. 3. Comparative Vertical Sections of the Coal Measures 63
FIG. 4. Bore-sections of the lower part of the Coal Measures around Broomhill, showing easterly thinning of the coals 106




      ALTHOUGH the ground with which this memoir is concerned is distributed over two one-inch maps, much the greater part lies within one only, Sheet 9. Sheet 10, to the east, is restricted to a small, though economically important, coastal strip. The conjoint area is wholly covered by Carboniferous rocks, of which there is a full sequence, ranging from the Cementstone Group up to the Coal Measures.

    The topography is in no sense spectacular, but it offers considerable variety. Considered broadly, a westerly belt of heather-covered moorland, centring on Rothbury, gives way on the east to rolling pasturelands, and these in turn to a low-lying coastal belt wherein a northern extension of the North-Eastern Coalfield is responsible for much active coal-mining.

    There are two main river-systems, those of the Coquet and the Font, and between them a third and much smaller one, that of the Lyne.

    The Rothbury district, deservedly well-known as an inland holiday resort, affords some of the most delightful scenery in Northumberland. Most of it is Fell Sandstone country, and northwards there is much high ground, rising rapidly from river-level (250 feet above the sea) to well over 800 feet, and stretching away north and north-east as a broad desolate moorland around or above the 900-ft. contour (Shirlah Pike is 1,010 ft.). But the most impressive features lie south-west of the town, where the bold escarpments of the Simonside Hills rise to over 1,400 feet above the sea ; at their foot the green pasturelands around the River Coquet are in strong contrast with the sombre heather-clad crags above. A spur from this range runs in a north-easterly direction from Garleigh Moor (878 ft.) to Longframlington Common; a short distance to the east of Rothbury this is breached by the River Coquet which, rising in the Cheviot Hills to the west, drains the northern half of the district, passing out to sea at Amble, in the extreme north-east corner of Sheet 9.

    South of the Simonside Hills the ground extends for miles as a broad inhospitable moorland region, sloping gently southwards and more rapidly to the south-east. The streams gathering on this upland country have very different destinations. Most of the Simonside water passes eastwards to the Coquet by way of the Forest Burn, but an important western section finds its way to the Font down the Chartners Burn; the watershed between the two runs far south past Newbiggin.

    The two chief rivers, the Coquet and the Font, diverge rapidly after leaving the western moorlands, and as the intervening ground broadens out a small independent river-system, that of the River Lyne, is developed ; this takes much of the drainage from the Coal Measure area, and after passing Ulgham and Ellington, reaches the sea at Lyne Sands.

    The coastal belt between the River Lyne and the Coquet to the north is mostly drained by small streams flowing to the sea, either directly or by way of the Chevington Burn. South of the River Lyne valley several streams flow south-eastwards to join the River Wansbeck, just to the south of the area.

    Away from the western moorlands most of the ground is undulating pastureland. The arable land, of less importance than formerly, lies to a great extent along the river valleys and east of the Great North Road. The central feature of the coast section is Druridge Bay, with its long unbroken stretches of firm sandy beach bordered by low sand-hills, in places no more. than 16 feet high. At either end of the bay, sandy beach gives place to rocky foreshore bordered by low cliffs of boulder-clay or rock, overlain by sand-dunes, which seldom rise to more than 60 feet above sea-level.
Boundaries of the six-inch geology maps quarter-sheets

All the pre-Glacial sediments within this area are of Carboniferous age:
 they are, together with the Glacial and Recent Deposits, arranged as follows :–


Recent and Post-Glacial:–
   Blown Sand
   Alluvia and Peat
    Sand and Gravel
    Boulder Clay
    Limestone Group
    Scremerston Coal Group
    Fell Sandstone
    Cementstone Group
Quartz-dolerite sills and dykes, and tholeiite dykes.


4 The characteristic features of the sedimentary rocks are :—

Coal Measures.—Sandstones, shales, and many thick, workable coals—the northern extremity of the Northumberland and Durham Coalfield.

Millstone Grit.—Sandstones and grits, often pebbly, shales and a few thin inferior coals, rarely workable.

Limestone Group.—Sandstones, shales with several coals, some workable ; there are many thick marine limestones with crinoid debris and other fossils.

Scremerston Coal Group.—Sandstones, shales and fireclays with some workable coals ; cement limestones, often barren but sometimes containing, entomostraca ; Spirorbis and rootlets or comminuted plant-debris are also present.

Fell Sandstone.—Massive sandstones, generally whitish, and often coarse and pebbly (the Rothbury Grits).

Cementstone Group.—Sandstones, grey and green shales with thin bands of earthy limestone or cementstone, and some thick limestones in part at least marine, with Spirorbis, ostracods, calcareous algae and Rhynchonellids.
       Representatives of all the sediments of the Carboniferous System in Northumberland are present within the area; the lowest members, beds of the Cementstone Group, occur in the north-west corner, and as the dip is mainly to the south-east there is a progressive rise in the sequence in this direction, until Coal Measure strata are encountered along the coastal belt.

   As may be expected, the regularity of this general sequence is occasionally interrupted by faults. Some of these are of great importance, more especially those in the north-western upland region, where the Bolton-Swindon Fault (at the western edge of the Sheet) has been computed by Hugh Miller to have a throw to the north of about 2,700 feet. A parallel disturbance, the Cragend-Chartners Fault, of almost similar magnitude, lies farther to the east but has its throw in the opposite direction ; the intervening ground is thus in the nature of a horst,  within which most of the high ground occurs. It is not unlikely that the movement which caused these disturbances may be related to that which produced the Holburn and Lemington anticlines in the district to the north.

   East of the Cragend-Chartners Fault the measures rise in unbroken sequence to the sea. Singularly enough, while powerful dislocations so strongly affect the lower sediments around Rothbury, and faults with displacements of 30 fathoms or thereabouts 5are common enough in the Coal Measures (several range between 75 and 100 fathoms), the Limestone Group seems to be little affected. Thus the outcrop of the three main limestones of the group can be followed uninterruptedly right across country from Newton-in-the-Moor in the north-east, to Hartington in the extreme south-west, a distance of more than 16 miles.

    Most of the area is covered by a varying thickness of glacial drift, and only to the north-west does the form of the ground bear any clear relation to the underlying geological structure; for the rest the topography is mostly of glacial origin.

    The Cementstone Group generally forms low-lying country, and it is the Fell Sandstone which is responsible for the most prominent topographical features, particularly around Rothbury. South-west of the town lie the Simonside Hills, rising to 1,447 feet, their prominent escarpments being visible for more than 30 miles (Plate I) ; amongst Northumbrian summits they are surpassed by the Cheviot Hills alone.

    The somewhat lower ground north of Rothbury is also built up for the most part of the hard, pebbly grits of the Fell Sandstone, with some faulted outliers of the Scremerston Group. Originally this must have been a desolate wilderness of crags, scars of sandstone and bleak moorland, but has now been largely transformed through the afforestation scheme initiated by the first Lord Armstrong on the Cragside estate. Artificial lakes have been surrounded with extensive plantations of coniferous and deciduous trees, mingled with rhododendrons, azaleas and rockplants in great variety.

    Away from the hilly Fell Sandstone country the topography is less strongly marked. Apart from the few natural sections exposed here and there in the gorges of the Coquet, the Font and the Forest Burn, there is little that calls for comment. Though the limestones are often 20 to 30 ft. in thickness they rarely form scars or crags, although it is quite possible some did exist before quarrying began. Occasionally the Great Limestone gives rise to minor features, as also may intrusions of the Whin Sill (e.g. Wards Hill, 3 miles S.S.E. of Rothbury), whilst in the south-west of the area some of the other limestones can be traced by means of swallow-holes.

    Some of the sandstones of the Limestone Group in the southwest assume a gritty or pebbly facies. When bare of drift these are at times much decomposed, and are occasionally dug for gravel (e.g. around Southward Edge), whilst at Rothley they give rise to prominent crags with steep scarp faces up to 120 feet high.

Certain minor topographic features ('dry-channels,' gravel ridges, etc.) are of Late-Glacial origin. These are especially prevalent in the moorland region south of the Simonside Hills, and will be referred to in due course.


      THE lowest Carboniferous rocks belong to the Cementstone Group, and are restricted to the Coquet valley in the extreme north-west corner of one-inch Sheet 9, on either side of the great Bolton-Swindon Fault.

   Only the highest beds of the Group are present. They are imperfectly seen, the bulk of them apparently being, as elsewhere, sandstones and variegated shales or marls with thin cementstone ribs. Associated with these are thick, pale-greyish, rather magnesian limestones, in part at least marine.

   The presence of these thick limestones is the distinctive feature of the Cementstone beds of this area, and with the occasional occurrence of true marine conditions is the main difference between these rocks and the predominantly freshwater or estuarine sediments of the type district along the River Tweed. A zone of true marine limestones is also known near the top of the Cementstone Group in Eskdale and Liddesdale, and a similar influx of marine conditions seems to occur in the country to the south-west (the Rede and North Tyne valleys). But in the main there is no doubt the beds represent an estuarine series laid down under lagoon conditions, the fauna consisting for the most part of ostracods, Spirorbis, small gastropods, estuarine lamellibranchs and calcareous algae.

    A most interesting feature of the highest beds of the Group is the important part played as rock-builders by these calcareous algae, notably Ortonella furcata. According to Professor Garwood, this algal development is the finest so far encountered in the North of England. Such limestones are known to occur elsewhere near the top of the Cementstone measures. In Liddesdale, for example, a calcareous organism, named Mitcheldeania gregaria by the late Prof. Nicholson, occurs in a persistent band of limestone immediately beneath the Fell Sandstone, and in Northumberland, near the head of Redesdale, Prof. Garwood has noted it in a pale-grey limestone in the Coomsdon Burn. No example has so far been encountered in the Rothbury district, the algal development in the highest beds being of the Orthonella type.

7   Although the associated strata are not well seen, the thick limestones themselves are well known from the numerous quarries opened when lime for agricultural purposes was got locally.

    The thickness of the Group as a whole is not readily made out. Although the covering of glacial deposits appears to be relatively thin, nevertheless good rock-exposures are rare, and the absence of any continuous section makes it almost impossible to arrive at more than a rough estimate. The thickness is greatest north of the River Coquet, in the extreme north-west corner of Sheet 9. Here there must be about 2,000 ft. of strata, reckoning from the lowest beds around Plainfield and north-west of High Trewhitt to the summit of the Group at Cartington. South of the Bolton-Swindon Fault, along the Coquet, only the highest members are present, including the three top limestones ; they total about 600 ft.

    High and Low Trewhitt, Flotterton and Cartington.—As already mentioned, about 2,000 ft. of measures outcrop in this region. Good sections are few and far between, one of the most noteworthy being about 830 yards west-north-west of High Trewhitt, where about 30 ft. of shales, with bands of impure cement-stone, are exposed. A short distance to the south, shale and shaly sandstone can be seen at intervals along the walls of the long-disused quarries in the Acklington Dyke. Again, near Low Trewhitt, an impure, earthy, and sandy limestone was at one time seen, dipping almost due south at 10°, whilst to the south an old quarry shows several feet of reddish-stained bedded and flaggy sandstone, dipping 8° to 15° a trifle west of south. A 4-ft. capping of reddish clay probably accounts for the staining. At Snitter Barns several feet of thinly-bedded, greyish sandstone are seen in a quarry at the farm, and to the south angular fragments of limestone are lying about in a shallow quarry. Associated with these beds are the thin shale and mudstone bands in the whin quarry at Silverside, some distance to the north.

    Slightly higher in the sequence a limestone can be traced for about a mile and a half from Westfield to beyond Flotterton. At the former place its presence is suggested by a deposit of calcareous tufa at the surface, whilst in a disused quarry at Warton 10 ft. of a shaly, splintery limestone can still be seen ; about 18 inches of this are exposed in the nearby burn, associated with calcareous tufa. Near Flotterton angular limestone fragments abound in the banks, of a small stream running into the River Coquet, and to the southwest are small quarries, the stone dipping S.E. at 8°, and showing Spirorbis and ostracods. A small fault shifts the outcrop to the west, and the strike swings due east, as shown by two overlying limestones which can be traced by spreads of calcareous tufa and many angular fragments lying about in the fields. The higher one is partially exposed in the left bank of the River Coquet south8 of Caistron, and it has been extensively quarried to the west in the neighbourhood of Hetchester (in the adjoining one-inch Sheet 8), where the stone was cream-coloured. These workings are now overgrown, but the following section and description has been recorded.  


Section of the Hepple Kiln or Hetchester Limestone.
Ft. In.
Limestone fragments -  -
 "Blue stone," rather less creamy-looking than the rest 1  6
"Pebbly Bed," sometimes mottled with concretions 2  0
"White rock," pure and cream-coloured 5  0
"The Yellow," an impure argillaceous bed 2  0
"Red Bed," weathering rather rusty 3  6
"Dent," (a shaly bed)  -  6 
Freestone  -  - 


      Among the fossils there were, it is stated, "a coral (Chaetetes sp.), a Turbo, a Modiola, and a Cytherella, all of indeterminable species. In the 'White Stone' Mr. Kirkby recognises Leperditia sub-recta, J. & K., and another very robust Leperditia not far from the same species ; in the 'Blue Stone,' Kirkbya spiralis, J. & K."

   The 'Pebbly Bed ' with concretions may be one of the calcareous algal bands so prominent in the higher limestones.

    Interesting though these occurrences are, it is in the Snitter-Cartington area that one sees the best exposures of the higher members of the Group. For instance, the lane E.N.E. from Snitter to the Black Burn is on the dip-slope of a limestone which is seen at the surface at several places in the fields alongside, whilst in the burn are several bands, dipping S.E. at 20°-25°. The stone is dark-grey and compact, in places shaly, slightly sandy and occasionally cherty ; beyond yielding a few ostracods and Spirorbis it is not fossiliferous. Only one other shell was noted, a Rhynchonellid, doubtfully referred by Dr. Pringle to Camarotoechia proava (Phill.), a fossil characteristic of the beds near the base of the Lower Carboniferous rocks of the North-Western Province, and marking the base of the C1 sub zone in Westmoreland.

      Slightly higher in the sequence a limestone was once wrought at Cartington quarry, 500 yards N.E. of Sandylands. Although little rock can now be seen, the quarry has apparently been of some considerable size, and doubtless a fair thickness of stone must have been present ; at least 12 feet were exposed in 1870, at the time of the original survey. There are traces of shells in the debris, among them ostracods and fragmentary brachiopods, including a Rhynchonellid. The dip is 8° in a direction a little north of east. There is little doubt that this is the same limestone so extensively quarried at Hetchester.

   9 Measures near the top of the Group are exposed in a whin quarry at Cartington, showing about 30 feet of indurated strata capped by limestone. This is one of the few places where the beds associated with the limestones can be studied. Immediately beneath the limestone are three feet of hard grey marl, and under that are shales with sandstone bands, thin cementstones and occasional concretionary limy bands with cherty limestone ribs. Only the bottom 7 feet of the limestone at the top of the section are seen, and the rock is badly 'burnt,' but in the fields to the south a little quarrying has been done. The dip here is rather high (E. by S. at 18°), and the limestone is bedded, impure and greyish with a reddish fracture. It weathers a pale-yellow and contains the alga Ortonella furcata.

    There are no exposures of the Cementstone measures above the limestone, and the thick sandstones of the overlying Fell Sandstone Group outcrop in the burn to the east.

    The limestones around Cartington strike almost north and south, and there is probably a fault along the base of the Fell Sandstone escarpment between South Cartington and Black Chirnells. One of the limestones reappears in the stream at the Mill (west of Lynnholm) and the dip is high, 65° to 70° ; at least 10 feet are seen, resting on micaceous shales. The stone is algal, bedded, greyish and rather sandy, with here and there ostracods and a few crinoid ossicles. Towards the base the limestone becomes more shaly and cherty.

     A vertical band of limestone noticed in the stream at Thropton, during the original survey, may be about the same horizon.

   Whitton and Newton.—There are probably not more than 600 feet of strata outcropping in this region, and these lie at the top of the Group. Sections of any kind are few, and our knowledge of the measures is largely confined to such limestones as can be traced by means of swallow-holes and disused quarries.

    The outstanding bed in this locality is without doubt the thick Glebe Limestone, so extensively wrought in past times at The Glebe, a mile S.S.W. of Rothbury. The farmstead stands directly on the outcrop, and the ruins of a lime-kiln hard by show that the stone was considered suitable for lime burning, although now only occasionally quarried for road-metal. A lower bed has also been wrought 200 yards to the west. In the Glebe quarry more than 22 feet of well-bedded limestone, dipping almost due east at 17° to 23°, was seen during the re-survey. Weathered surfaces have a slightly brownish or ochreous look, but when freshly fractured the stone has a greyish, compact appearance. Fossils are not particularly abundant ; for the most part they are small gastropods, ostracods, a few crinoids and the alga Spongiostrorna. 10 On weathered faces some of the beds show nodular or concretionary structures an inch or more across, built up of numerous concentric rings, dark-greyish in colour. These have been attributed to the calcareous alga, Ortonella furcata originally described by Professor Garwood from the Shap-Ravenstonedale district, where it forms a constant band near the top of the C1 sub-zone.

    Ortonella furcata reaches the acme of its development in this district and is especially characteristic of the two highest limestones of the Cementstone Group. One prominent algal band in the Glebe Limestone is at least 3 feet thick (see Plate II, B).

      A short distance to the south, at the farm of Whittondean, the top beds of what is doubtless the same limestone are exposed in the banks of the stream (Whitton Burn), and the farmer having been informed that there is always coal beneath limestone (as indeed is often so in the case of the purely marine limestones so prevalent in the more eastern localities of one-inch Sheet 9), started to sink a small shaft through the bed. After having passed through 12 to 15 feet of stone the project was abandoned. The limestone is thick-bedded, and many of the blocks around the shaft show the Ortonella band so prominent in the Glebe quarry to the north. Westwards the limestone probably directly underlies the stream, which here and there disappears into small Swallow-holes.


      Limestone appears at the surface at several places along the burn, and there are some exceptionally large swallow-holes along side the Lordenshaw-Wolfershiel Fault, about half a mile S.W. of Whitton Hillhead. Into one of these (in which 12 inches of limestone can be seen) the water of the Coe Burn (a stream rising on the south-eastern slopes of Simonside) disappears, and, in the opinion of Professor P. F. Kendall, reappears near the outcrop of the limestone at Newtown. The limestone has been quarried 500 yds. W.S.W. of Whitton Hillhead, where 6 ft. of bedded rock, dipping 3° to 4° W.S.W., are still visible. The top few inches are in compact, very fine-grained cherty limestone, passing down into a more sandy band. The exposure has yielded no fossils beyond the algae Spongiostroma and Ortonella; fragments with the latter are numerous in the field south of the quarry. As this limestone dips almost due east at The Glebe, the beds hereabouts lie in the form of a dome, centred about Whitton Hillhead.

     Near Newtown, the Glebe Limestone, thick, hard, and of good quality, is exposed in the burn which passes under the Rothbury road ; the stone shows traces of marine organisms, including a fragment of a Rhynchonellid. Downstream from the limestone outcrop11 underlying sandstone bands are rolling slightly, whilst farther down the burn micaceous sandstone dips a trifle east of north. There seems to be some disturbance here, for the general dip is southwards, as is well shown by beds overlying the limestone, exposed a little to the south of the farm at Newtown ; shaly micaceous sandstones are seen at the surface here, and 200 yards S.W. of Newtown, in the stream (Routing Burn on the six-inch map), sandstones, associated with a decalcified limestone, dip almost due south at 20°. This limestone may be on the horizon of the sandy limestone outcropping on the road east of the Tower at Great Tosson. Close to the Tower is an outcrop of shales with Naiadites, Murchisonia-like gastropods, entomostraca and indeterminable plant-remains.

     At Whittondean flaggy sandstones overlie the Glebe Limestone, and in an adjacent rivulet a slightly higher limestone is exposed, made up of thin alternating shale and impure limestone bands with at least one thin sandstone rib, the whole being at least 12 ft. thick. Westwards, on the south side of the valley, there are some small quarries which may be in this upper bed.

      The highest limestone of the Group has been quarried high up on the hillside (Birky Hill on the six-inch map), 800 ft. above the sea, about half a mile S.S.E. of Whitton Hillhead. Whilst rock is not actually seen in situ innumerable fragments abound in the old quarries. The rock is greyish, with ochreous weathering : it is rather impure, and in places quite cherty. Spirorbis and ostracods are plentiful, along with a good development of Ortonella furcata.

      Fragments of a limestone were noticed during the re-survey at the head of the Routing Burn, near the Camp about ¼ mile S.E. of Great Tosson. The stone was definitely crinoidal, and would appear to be about the horizon of the Birky Hill limestone, although comparable fossils have not been noticed.

     The Cementstone Group of the Newtown Park district, together with the overlying Fell Sandstone Group of Garleigh Moor, strike against the Fell Sandstone of the Simonside Hills. There would thus appear to be a strong fault, with downthrow to the south, along the base of the Simonside escarpment between Lordenshaw and Wolfershiel.

    Great Tosson to Bickerton.— As in the preceding section, the most important limestone is the second highest of the Cementstone Group, corresponding to the Glebe Limestone of the Rothbury district. It has been quarried north of Great Tosson. As at The Glebe, a somewhat lower bed has been wrought in a group of small quarries about 250 yards south of Allerdene farm. The quarries in the higher limestone are fairly extensive ; the largest, in which the lime-kiln stands, is on the roadside 500 yards north of Great Tosson. At least 22 feet of rock can be seen, and the stone is thick-bedded, greyish, weathers yellowish and is much veined with calcite. The limestone contains traces of gastropods, ostracods and annelids, including Serpula sp., Spirorbis helicteres 12 Salter and Spirorbis caperatus M'Coy. The presence of they latter fossil at this position, near the top of the group, is noteworthy, as in North Cumberland it occurs at one horizon only—in the upper algal bands near the summit of the Cementstone Group. Hitherto S.caperatus was unknown in the Cementstone beds of Roxburghshire or Northumberland. The rock quarried here is also noticeable for a rich development of Ortonella furcata (so characteristic of the Glebe Limestone), and fragments showing these curious concretions can be picked up in the various quarries. The beds in the largest and most easterly of the quarries dip 5°-8° slightly east of south, but westwards, as the limestone approaches the Lordenshaw-Wolfershiel fault, a more pronounced easterly dip sets in towards the line of dislocation. Greyish-white sandstone, lying at no great distance above the limestone, shows this particularly well, the dip being as high as 22° to S.S.E.

      South of Little Tosson there are some shallow limestone quarries, now mostly overgrown, whilst a little to the east undulating outcrops of limestone are seen. The great Bolton-Swindon Fault probably lies fairly close at hand.

   Chester Hope to Bickerton.—The uppermost beds of the Group outcrop in this area, and include the three highest limestone bands, the middle one being the important Tosson or Glebe Limestone. Little is seen of the lowest, the outcrop being marked by angular fragments lying about in the fields, by spreads of calcareous tufa at the surface, and by an 'occasional small quarry now completely overgrown. Nor are the exposures in the middle bed anything like so good as at Tosson or The Glebe, but there are a fair number of quarries along the outcrop. The two largest are close together, near the western edge of one-inch Sheet 19, mile S.S.W. of Bickerton, and the ruins of an old lime-kiln are seen here. Slightly to the west there is an excellent exposure with much Ortonella furcata, in the burn which passes close to Hepple Whitefield. Overlying greyish-white sandstones, dipping 20° to S.S.E., are seen between Wolfershiel and Chester Hope, and associated red and greenish shales were observed during the original survey. There are small quarries at Chester Hope in the highest limestone. The rock is greyish with reddish streaks, contains ostracods and fragments of Rhynchonellids, and like the Birky Hill stone has a good development of Ortonella. Swallow-holes show that the bed can be traced westwards along the 700-ft. contour, not far from the base of the Fell Sandstone escarpment west of Ravens Heugh, and it has been quarried at the extreme western edge of one-inch Sheet 9.   


      THERE is a good and typical development of the Fell Sandstone throughout the Rothbury district. As already noted, the Group is responsible for most of the high ground in that region, notably so in the prominent escarpments of the Simonside Hills (see Plate I) and the barren moorland stretching north-eastwards towards Longframlington.
The sandstones are commonly quartzose in character and sparingly micaceous, the basement beds being generally much finer-grained than those towards the top. The latter, as a rule, are very coarse and pebbly, so much so, indeed, that in this region the Group is often referred to as the Rothbury Grits.

      False-bedding in this great arenaceous series is so prevalent that any estimation of thickness must be merely approximate ; so far as can be judged it can hardly be less than 1,000 ft.

      Since strata belonging to the Cementstone Group occupy the lower ground it is comparatively easy to draw a base-line for the Fell Sandstone. It is not so easy to fix the junction with the overlying Scremerston measures, and the frequent and obvious faulting hereabouts adds to the difficulty.

      North and west of Rothbury, immediately behind the town, the ground rises rapidly from 280 ft. to 650 ft., and then more gently to 800 ft. At Rothbury the beds are inclined gently in a direction a trifle west of north ; westwards the strike gradually veers round, the dip changes through north to east and finally to the south-east at Glitteringstone and South Cartington. Along the face of this outcrop the rock has been extensively quarried for building-stone at several localities near Pondicherry (a mile west of Rothbury), where at the north end of a large quarry the beds are dipping due east at 3°, whilst at the south end the dip is almost due north. A little to the east there is another large quarry in slightly higher beds. These strata are probably in the lower half of the Group.
      On the high ground, between Glitteringstone and the heights of Addycombe, crags and scars of sandstone abound. In this region the rock is notably coarse and pebbly ; this is especially so at Addycombe, where quartz pebbles up to an inch across are quite common, and the stone is traversed by numerous quartz-veins up to 11 inches wide. The tumultuous bedding gives rise to what14 Hugh Miller has described as a "gnarled-looking structure of contorted-like planes," a common Fell Sandstone feature throughout the country, and no doubt due to contemporary slip.

      Fell Sandstone measures cover a large area along the northern margin of the map, from north of Cartington eastwards by Swallow Knowe to Longframlington Common. This broad outcrop seems in part due to repetition by faulting.

      At Cartington the lowest beds dip E.S.E. to S.E., and are seen in the stream near the Castle ; eastwards the measures dip due south at 10°, whilst around Chain Heads and Hard Heugh the dip has changed to E.N.E. and N. Such frequent oscillations in this obscure ground suggest that faulting may be more prevalent than is shown on the map.

      Near Debdon, highly false-bedded coarse and pebbly grits dip 15° to 25° towards the S.E., whilst farther east, near A 902, prominent crags of coarse pebbly sandstone, with much quartz-veining, have a pronounced south-westerly strike ; they bend sharply round, almost through a right angle, against a powerful dislocation which lets down Scremerston measures into the Debdon Burn.

      From Wellhope Knowe to Wellhope, rock is occasionally seen at the surface, with a general dip south to south-east. At Wellhope massive current-bedded sandstone, dipping 20° to S.E., is exposed in the side of a large glacial overflow channel, about 70 feet deep towards the outlet.

     From Longframlington Common the strike runs steadily southwest. In this bleak upland region the Group lies in the 'horst' between two important faults ; that to the west (a branch of the Bolton-Swindon Fault) bringing down the Dun Limestone against basement beds of the Fell Sandstone, the other (the Cragend-Chartners Fault) bringing the Oxford Limestone against the uppermost beds of the Group. Exposures are numerous, not only as natural crags and scars, but also in the several quarries opened up along the escarpment between Cragside and Cragend.

     South-west of Whitefield House there are several prominent ridges of coarse, pebbly, false-bedded sandstone, dipping S.E., and much slickensided and veined with quartz. A short distance to the south-west, on the eastern shore of the lake north of Cragside, an old quarry shows a face over 100 feet high, in bedded, rather yellowish, slightly micaceous sandstone, with some thin shale partings. Most of the stone for the buildings on the Cragside estate was obtained here. Between Cragside and Cragend there is a continuous line of rugged scars with contorted bedding-planes, and, on the high ground around the lakes, excessively false-bedded coarse sandstone. At Cragend an old quarry showing 25 ft. of massive, hard, medium-grained sandstones supplied the stone for the renewal of the huge steps at Bamburgh Castle.

      At the Thrum Mill the River Coquet cuts a gorge in the15 lower beds of the Group : there is as much as 100 feet of rock showing in the precipitous south bank, and pot-holes abound in the river bed (Plate II, A). The Rothbury branch of the London and North Eastern Railway, which here follows the course of the river, traverses all but the highest beds of the Fell Sandstone series. In the few cuttings not overgrown the sandstone is thick-bedded, white to greyish, and very sparingly micaceous, dipping E.S.E. at 5° to 10°. Good exposures are again seen in the southern reaches of the burns entering the Coquet around Mount Healey ; a new quarry for the bridge here shows 25 feet of unevenly-bedded white stone. On Garleigh Moor the weathering-away of softer bands has produced a series of well-defined dip-slopes inclined 20° to S.E. On the highest ground (about 879 O.D.) the beds display the coarse, pebbly nature so noticeable elsewhere in the higher parts of the group. The measures here are bounded to the east by the great Cragend-Chartners Fault, which must cut out the very highest beds, the whole of the succeeding Scremerston division and almost all the Lower Limestone Group. To the south the Garleigh Moor beds end at the Lordenshaw-Wolfershiel Fault. South of this disturbance there is a perceptible change in the strike from the steady south-westerly direction of Garleigh Crags to the more westerly to north-westerly trend of the Simonside Hills ; this change is well seen from the high ground to the south around Blueburn.

      On the Simonside Hills the Group attains a maximum thickness of 1,000 feet or more, the step-like escarpments showing up boldly against the skyline (Plate I). The boulder-clay covering is very thin, and rock crags and scars, as well as many small quarries, abound throughout the range. Along the line of the Lordenshaw Fault, south of Great Tosson, are numerous powerful springs, no doubt fed from this great mass of sandstone. The lower beds are seen in the escarpments at Ravens Heugh and west thereof, all dipping somewhat east of south and showing crag faces over 100 feet high. The rock is massive, highly current-bedded and coarser than usual, with well-rounded quartz-grains and free from mica. Massive courses can be made out up to 20 feet thick, but they seem to have no great lateral extension, although ridges formed by the harder beds can be traced around the hillside.
      An old quarry, south of Great Tosson, alongside the Lordenshaw Fault, shows about 14 feet of bedded and flaggy fairly fine-grained sandstone with some mica. The rock has black specks, a feature seemingly confined to the very lowest sandstones of the Group.
Strata rather higher than the foregoing are seen in the Newtown Park district, where there are many prominent crags and scarp faces ; that at Simonside is well over 100 feet in height, the rock being coarse and pebbly.
      The dip-slopes of the Simonside range are strewn with huge boulders of sandstone amongst the innumerable natural crags and scars.16 As might be expected in massive rock of this kind, fluting and grooving are common on weathered faces. Here and there a widening of horizontal and vertical joints has produced small caves : that at Ousen House, north of Selby's Cove, is 14 feet long, 10 feet broad and 3 to 7 feet high, but there may have been some artificial enlargement.
      There is a notable exposure on the southern dip-slopes, in the deep glacial cut at Selby's Cove ; here 40 feet of hard fine-grained yellowish sandstone can be seen in the sides of the channel. Westwards most of the ground lies above the 1,200-ft. contour, a bleak and barren moory region littered with boulders of sandstone, scarred with ridges of rock, with here and there considerable stretches of peat.

      ALTHOUGH this Group is here of little economic importance, the area links the typical Scremerston country of North Northumberland with the more marine facies of that series on the west. It is therefore most disappointing to find that even in the few places where the measures are reasonably well-displayed, as along the Debdon Burn, they are so heavily faulted that the succession is completely obscured.

      The strata outcrop in three widely separated areas : firstly, a faulted outlier north of Rothbury, in the heart of the Fell Sandstone, between Debdon Burn and the Rothbury-Alnwick road (the only region where coals have been wrought to any extent) ; secondly, 4½ miles W.S.W. of Rothbury (a very small patch, part of an outlier of Fell Sandstone and Scremerston measures faulted amid beds of the Cementstone Series) ; and thirdly, a narrow strip on the southern slopes of the Simonside Hills between Lordenshaw and Chartners.

      The strata are yellowish, bedded sandstones, sandy shales, blue and black shales, fireclays, poor-quality ganisters, innumerable thin coals (few of workable thickness), and limestones or cement-stones, either barren or with Spirorbis, entomostraca and rootlets. Fossils of any other kind are rare, though occasionally there are indications of marine or semi-marine conditions, as evidenced by the presence of Lingula, Sanguinolites, and Euphemus-like shells.

      As compared with the type district at Scremerston, south of Berwick (where the group is at its maximum of over 1,000 ft.), the group shows considerable attenuation, as in the adjacent Alnwick district. As far as can be ascertained, the thickness in the Debdon region can scarcely be more than 500 feet, although in the moorland country south of the Simonside Hills, where dips are generally fairly high, it may perhaps be greater.

     The small Bickerton outlier is part of a much larger area of Scremerston measures in the adjoining one-inch Sheet 8, let down by the Bolton-Swindon Fault, at its maximum hereabouts. The strata strike against the Fault, and only the very lowest beds are present. Nothing is seen at the surface, although there is a line of old pits to a coal which has been more extensively wrought to the west, beyond the edge of the map.

     Debdon.—Scremerston strata, apparently conformable with the18 Fell Sandstone Group at Chain Heads, outcrop around the head of the Debdon Burn. In this stream about 40 feet of shales, passing down into fine-grained rooty sandstone, can be seen dipping almost due south at 36° ; lower down are shales, fireclays and sandstone. In an adjoining sike (Forster's Shaw Sike on the six-inch map) is a 12-in. coal, interleaved with thin shale bands. Numerous pit ' falls ' show that the seam has been wrought, thin though it may be. Associated with the coal are shales and sandstones, and a short distance above, a blue, flaggy, calcareous sandstone, with occasional coal fragments, contains Euphemus, obscure traces of lamellibranchs and small brachiopods.

      About 100 yards below the junction of the sike with Debdon Burn sandstone dips 40° to 45° S.E. Farther down stream vertical shale, sandstone and fireclay bands, with a 20-in. band of barren limestone or cementstone, suggest that there may be an east-west fault hereabouts. The strike is almost at right angles to that of an exposure in the burn at the north end of the wood, where the following section was noted :—
  Ft. In.
  Sandstone, pale-brown, fine-grained, micaceous 4 0
  Sandstone, in two 8-in. bands 1 4
  Sandstone, grey to light-grey, streaky, in two beds with
a 2-in. parting of sandy shale
2 6
  Shales with thin sandstone ribs 1 6
  Sandstone, grey, streaky 0 9
  Shales with sandstone ribs 1 6
  Sandstone, brownish arid ganister-like 1 0
  Coal 2 6
  Shales, dark-grey 2 6
Clay-ironstone band 0 6
  Shales 2 0
  Clay-ironstone band  0 1½
  Shales, Sanguinolites in bottom part— 2 0
  Shales 2 6
*{   Shales, hard, dark-greyish, slightly sandy and limy 0 3
Shales, hard, compact clay— 0 11
  Limestone, fine-grained, light to dark-grey, weathering
yellowish—no fossils
1 3


       These beds dip to the S.S.E. at 44°, and are followed by overlying yellowish, thick-bedded sandstones, of which at least 30 feet are seen. Lower downstream, opposite Debdon farm, a characteristic Scremerston assemblage shows alternations of numerous thin coals, mostly about 1 in. thick, with several fireclays (some beds up to 3 ft.) shales and thin sandstone bands, the whole dipping to the S.E. at 30°.

  19  Hard by, some disturbance is caused by the intrusion of a 5-ft. whin dyke, now much decomposed. North of the intrusion the dip is to north-east, and on the south side is to the south-east. Four hundred yards downstream from the dyke, shales dip 70° to N.E. Without doubt there is a disturbance between these shales and an exposure in an adjacent tributary, where a 9½ in. entomostracan limestone with rootlets dips almost due south at 45°. The limestone is overlain by a foot of carbonaceous shale, surmounted by 3 ft. of dark-grey fireclay with Stigmaria. About 50 yds. higher up the sike there is another fault against which steeply-inclined flaggy sandstone dips almost due west, whilst a little farther east the dip, as seen on flaggy sandstone with pale-grey marls containing clay-galls, is 35° to the S.W. For the purpose of this memoir the base of the series in this locality has been drawn just above these pale-grey marls, and all the ground eastwards towards the Rothbury-Alnwick road has been placed in the Scremerston Group. In this stretch there are few exposures, but many old shafts, most of them to a coal which must outcrop just below a sandstone crag known as Cragpit Hill on the 6-inch map. Fragments of an entomostracan limestone, (along with shale and sandstone), are to be found in all the old pit-heaps, and there is little doubt that the seam along its whole length has a limestone roof, as have so many of the coals in the typical Scremerston country around Berwick-on-Tweed. The sandstone at Cragpit Hill dips gently S.E., thence turning to S.S.W. at 30°. The rock is coarse to medium-grained, micaceous in places, and occasionally decomposed to a golden-yellow sand.

      In Debdon Burn about 50 ft. of this sandstone are exposed ; the dip is 32° between S.W. and W.S.W. There is an abandoned day-level to a coal hereabouts, and an old pit probably marks the site of the air-shaft. The presence of an entomostracan limestone in the burn suggests a correlation of this coal with that at Cragpit Hill. The limestone is only seen when the burn is very low, about 25 yards below the Debdon road-bridge ; 2 feet of pale-yellow, rather impure stone, with Spirorbis and entomostraca, can be seen steeply inclined to the west. It is possible that the limestone abuts against an east-west fault crossing the burn near the bridge, as in the bank-side, where one would normally expect the thick sandstone above the coal, there is a small anticlinal fold in shales with sandstone ribs. One limb of the anticline is vertical—the other dips west at 35°, whilst in the burn blue shales dip a few degrees south of west at 60°. The latter yielded Lingula mytiloides J. Sow., L. squamiformis Phill., and Edmondia pentonensis Hind.

     The only other exposure in the Scremerston beds worthy of mention is that in the quarry in the Acklington Dyke, on the west side of the Rothbury-Alnwick road. Here about 15 feet of well-bedded, yellow and grey sandstone dip 25° to 30° S.E. ; they have occasional thin shale bands in which were noted several well-formed crystals of pyrites. At the west end of the quarry several feet of20sandstone and thin bands of shale rest on a 3-in. coal, whilst at the east end a N.E.-S.W. fault throws the thick sandstones against a series of shales and fireclays. This fault is seen again in a small stream to the N.E., where sandy shales dip steeply towards it. Farther down stream there are several exposures of sandstone, so highly disturbed as to suggest the proximity of the Bolton-Swindon Fault, or a branch thereof. Immediately beyond, crags and scars of coarse, pebbly, quartz-veined, slickensided sandstones of the Fell Sandstone Group make their appearance. Measures of the Scremerston series, therefore, could not be expected to extend much to the east of the Rothbury-Alnwick road.

     Half a mile west of Whitefield House the Scremerston Group ends at the Dun Limestone (see p. 23), near the head of the Black Burn. A thin coal is said to underlie the limestone, but the numerous workings hereabouts doubtless belong to coals rather lower in the sequence. North of this all the Scremerston measures are cut off by a N.W.-S.E. fault bringing in beds of the Fell Sandstone.

     Chartners, Spylaw and Lordenshaw.—South of Simonside Hills there is a narrow strip of carbonaceous rocks which have been assigned to the Scremerston Group. The Cragend-Chartners Fault separates them from the Fell Sandstone Group, cutting out more and more of the Scremerston beds in a north-easterly direction, until at Lordenshaw the omission is complete.

      The strata have a general south-easterly dip, which varies considerably in amount. Near Lordenshaw the dip is about 40°, while around Blagdonburn it varies from 30° to 60°. Near Selby's Cove it is much lower, whilst in the extreme south-west of the strip it is about 20° S.S.E.

      Exposures are poor and discontinuous,, and only to be found in small streams far apart. Five hundred yards south of Lordenshaw there is a small section in fine-grained yellow sandstone, fireclays with a thin coal, and an ochreous bed, probably a decalcified limestone or cementstone, dipping 40° to S.S.E. There are some traces hereabouts of old workings to a coal said to have been 2 ft. thick. There are no more exposures until the Forest Burn is reached, about a mile to the south-west. Near the head-waters of this stream, at Selby's Cove, there is an isolated exposure of about 4 ft. of hard, blocky, dark-grey calcareous shales exceedingly rich in entomostraca. Farther downstream there are some discontinuous exposures showing alternations of thin coals (none over 12 in. thick), shales (some contain Lingula squamiformis Phill.), sandy shales, fireclays and ganisters ; one good ganister bed is 2 ft. 6 in. thick. These are interbedded with grey and yellow sandstones, with an occasional unfossiliferous limestone or cementstone. Unfortunately the Dun Limestone is not exposed in the burn, and the upper limit of the Group has to be inferred from an exposure of the Oxford Limestone half a mile S.W. of The Hut.

      A definite outcrop of the Dun is known in the Blanch Burn,21 two miles to the west-south-west, where the limestone, seen at two places, rests on 12 inches of ochreous shale, with 10 feet of fireclayshale below on purplish sandstone. Scremerston measures are once more visible immediately to the south of the Cragend-Chartners Fault, in the stream about ¾ mile W.S.W. of Chartners farm. The exposures are disappointing, for all that can be seen is a series of yellow, micaceous sandstones, interbedded with flaggy sandstone and blue shales (some with clay-ironstone nodules), which so far have failed to yield any fossils. The dip of these beds varies between 20° and 25° to the south-south-east.


      THE Limestone Group with its three subdivisions crosses the heart of one-inch Sheet 9, and accounts for fully half of that map. The development is of the usual Northumbrian type ; that is to say, there are many bands of marine limestone which, though quite subordinate to the intervening sandstones and shales, are nevertheless so remarkably persistent as to be invaluable in interpreting the ground. Several coals are known, mostly in the Upper Group, but they cannot be said to be of much economic importance.

      In that rather remote moorland region around Fallowlees, little is seen of the Lower Limestone Group other than the top and bottom members. Of the Middle Limestone Group, the higher limestones are well exposed and can be traced with but little interruption from Newton-on-the-Moor in the north to Hartington in the south-west, a distance of over 16 miles. As has been already noted, with so much faulting on either side it is rather remarkable that these extensive limestone outcrops should remain unbroken, and unaffected by any but the feeblest of disturbances.
The Upper Group covers a far greater area than the other two : this is largely due to its low inclination, with gentle undulations setting in south of the Coquet until along the southern margin of Sheet 9 the outcrop of the group is over 9 miles in width, or three times more than north of the river.

      Taking the series as a whole, sandstones predominate, as elsewhere in Northumberland. They are accompanied by bands of blue shale, crinoidal limestones, fireclays and thin coals ; several of the coals are workable, but only one seam, the Shilbottle Coal north of the Coquet, is of real value at the present time. Apart from plant-remains, the fossils seem always to be purely marine ; estuarine and freshwater limestones and cementstones, so common in the underlying beds, are here practically unknown.
The total thickness of the group is about 2,200 ft., the general sequence being as follows :-


  The Upper Limestone Group :—  
North  of the  Coquet   Strata with the BRAINSHAUGH, SHOTHAUGH and  other limestones 500
Strata with HAZON COAL and the CUSHAT or LITTLE
  The Middle Limestone Group 23:—  
  Strata with TOP COAL (TOWNHEAD of Shilbottle area) 150
  Strata with SHILBOTTLE COAL and two thin limestones 120
  Strata with BEADNELL COAL and several limestones 400
  The Lower Limestone Group :—  
  Strata 400
  Total 2198


      Rothbury and Chartners.—The Dun Limestone, marking the base of the Group, has been quarried near the head of the Black Burn, two miles or so north of Rothbury, alongside the Alnwick road. The exposure, though poor, still shows 12 to 18 in. of limestone in situ. On the waste heaps are innumerable fragments of earthy and crinoidal limestone with an abundance of Lithostrotion. There are also many small Girvanella-like nodules and finely-ribbed large Productids, features at once recalling the Dun Limestone of more northern localities. A 12-in, coal is said to lie immediately below. The succeeding measures are almost at once cut off by the coarse, pebbly Fell Sandstone covering all the area eastwards up to the Cragend-Chartners Fault.

      The Dun Limestone is not seen again until the Chartners area is reached, about 4½ miles S.S.W. of Rothbury. Here the limestone is well exposed at several places, first of all in the Blanch Burn, and again in the Newbigin Burn above the junction of these two streams. In the Blanch Burn 10 feet of bedded limestone can be seen. Though grey and crystalline, the stone is nevertheless rather sandy and earthy, with a pronounced ochreous weathering. It contains crinoid ossicles, much Lithostrotion m'coyanum Edw. and Haime, Productids, Rhynchonellids, occasional trilobite tails and a few ostracods. The following have been recognized from this limestone :—Lonsdaleia sp., Athyris sp., Camarotoechia?, Productus (Linoproductus) cf. corrugatus M'Coy, Pustula sp., an occasional lamellibranch, Conocardium sp., and the gastropod Naticopsis. The limestone rests on 12 inches of ochreous shale with 12 inches of inferior ganister below, and then 10 feet of fireclayshale with some purplish sandstone beneath. The beds here are dipping downstream a few degrees E. of S. at 10°. In the adjoining Newbigin Burn the dip is 20° to S.S.W., and the limestone is at least 15 feet thick, in beds of 5 feet or less. The stone is, grey and crystalline, much harder than in the Blanch Burn, but it still 24 retains its ochreous weathering. The top abounds in Lithostrotion junceum (Flem.) ; the rock is crinoidal throughout, and in addition shows the usual small Girvanella-like nodules.

      Little really definite is known of strata between the Dun and Oxford Limestones within the area of the map. They may possibly be represented by loose fragments of limestone seen in the remote moorland region 11 miles west of Fallowlees, on the western edge of the Sheet. Nothing more is seen until we reach the Oxford Limestone in the Forest Burn above Morrelhirst, where there is an underlying medium-grained sandstone, highly false-bedded, and whitish with an occasional pale-reddish tint. This must be at least 40 ft. thick and it reappears in much the same position along the Newbigin Burn.

      Newton-on-the-Moor to Overgrass Mill.—In this region the sequence in the higher beds of the Middle Limestone Group is well known from the many mining operations in connection with the Shilbottle Coal. Consequently, although there are no surface exposures of that seam, or of the Six and Eight-Yard Limestones, until the Swarland Burn is reached, nevertheless the outcrops can be laid down with tolerably certainty.  The Shilbottle Coal is in good condition here, for the area directly adjoins the more northern field, where the seam is at a maximum.

      Old pits abound in the vicinity of Newton-on-the-Moor, but the coal is not seen at the surface, as it is masked by some 15 fathoms of surface deposits. The most important pit seems to have been that on the west side of the Great North Road, 200 yards north of the village ; this was 53 fathoms deep, and worked the coal over a small area on either side of the main road. Nowhere do the workings seem to have extended south of the village, and so far as we know there ought to be a good field of coal intact in this direction.

      South-westwards the coal was won from the Hunter or Dike-head pit (400 yards S.-W. of Greens Farm), of which the section was :—


  Fms. Ft. In
Clay and metal 4 4  0
Soft freestone 3 3  0
Post 7 3  0
Black metal 10 2  0
Limestone [EIGHT-YARD] 4 0  0
Main post 7 0  0
Grey metal 6 0  0
Limestone [SIX-YARD] 3 3  0
Post 1 3  0
Metal 1 0  0
Fireclay and post 1 3  0
Redstone 0 1  0
Strong metal roof 1 3  3
Coal (SHILBOTTLE) 0 2  9
Total 52 5  6


    25  In this district the Little Limestone is invariably present between the Six-Yard Limestone and the Shilbottle Coal; it should not be confused with the better known Little Limestone of more southern localities, which lies much higher in the Limestone Series.

      In the field north of Overgrass Mill there are several old pits to the Shilbottle Coal, whilst in the Swarland Burn, north of New-moor Hall, the Six-Yard Limestone is well exposed ; the stone still retains many of the features which characterize it in the Alnwick Sheet to the north, i.e. it is compact and crinoidal, with a sub-glassy fracture, and many small spherical tests of the foraminifer Saccamminopsis fusulinaformis. Throughout the area the Six-Yard Limestone varies between 18 feet and 21 feet in thickness. Nothing is seen of the beds beneath the limestone, but overlying strata are well exposed. First comes, as in the Belford-Holy Island country, a thick bed of shale with large flat oval clay-ironstone concretions ; several miles to the south-west, at Brinkburn, these ironstones were at one time wrought opencast. The shale is highly fossiliferous throughout, being especially rich in Fenestellids and brachiopods. White sandstone is seen above, followed in the stream close to Newmoor Hall by a broad outcrop of the Eight-Yard Limestone. This limestone rests on a 6-in. coal, with a 12 to 18-in. bed of light-grey fireclay below. The Eight-Yard is in this area, as its name implies, usually about 24 ft. thick ; it is a greyish, crinoidal stone, noticeably richer than the Six-Yard in Saccamminopsis fusulinaformis, a condition reversed in North Northumberland. Overlying shales, 12 ft. thick, are seen in the Swarland Burn and above them a dark-greyish earthy limestone at least 15 ft. thick, which may be the equivalent of that over the main post of the Eight-Yard Limestone near Peppermoor.  Above this are about 60 ft. of shales underlying a thick bed of sandstone. In the Swarland Burn the shales are indifferently exposed, while the sandstone is seen in the gorge below Overgrass Mill ; farther downstream a 2-ft. band of shaly, fossiliferous limestone is seen on 10 in. of coal, with 6 in. of dark-grey fireclay below. Lower down the stream a 1-ft. coal with ironstone nodules underlies 2½ feet of fireclay. There seems little doubt that these two leaves of coal are the top and bottom portions of the Top Coal (the Town-head Coal of Shilbottle) which is well known, from various shafts hereabouts, to lie about 8 or 12 fathoms below the Great Limestone. The 2-ft. limestone is probably the band referred to by miners in this district as the Cockle-shell Bed.' Several feet of highly fossiliferous shales overlie the limestone. The rock-section ends here, the Great Limestone being masked by surface deposits, but it appears in an old quarry at Overgrass, where at least 9 feet can be seen, and the stone has the light creamy colour so noticeable in areas to the north. There is also a string of quarries in this limestone on the roadside between Black House and Newton-on-the Moor. In one of these, about 20 feet of bedded limestone can still 26 be seen. The stone is crinoidal, but otherwise not noticeably fossiliferous.

      Embleton Stead to Healey Cote:— The Shilbottle Coal has been actively mined hereabouts, both at Longframlington Colliery, north of the village, and at Healey Cote. The pit recently working at Longframlington was sunk 82 fathoms to the coal, 2 ft. 8 in. thick, and dipping 30° east of south at 9°. The shaft passed through the Great, Eight-Yard and Six-Yard Limestones. About 430 yards to the N.W. the Fanny Pit (long disused) passed through about 12 fathoms of surface deposits before reaching rock-head ; the coal, 2 ft. 10 in., thick, was got, at 52 fathoms. Nearer the outcrop the surface deposits thicken ; the John Pit, about 350 yards to the N.W. of the Fanny Pit, passed through as much as 21 fathoms of clay, etc., before reaching the Six-Yard Limestone, of which only the lower 6 feet were present. The coal was here 2 ft. 11 in. thick.

      South-westwards, towards Healey Cote, there are innumerable old workings along the outcrop of the Shilbottle Coal. The pit north of the hamlet of Healey Cote cut the seam, 2 ft. 6 in. thick, at 40 fathoms, of which 12 represented surface deposits. The dip of the coal, proved underground, is 7° to E.S.E.

      Between the Six-Yard Limestone and the Shilbottle Coal are two well-known local 'marks'—the Little Limestone and the 'Red Bed'. The Little Limestone is a pale-grey limestone from 2 to 3 feet thick, and the 'Red Bed' (see also p. 29) is a pale-grey fossiliferous sandstone with reddish weathering. In spite of a thick covering of boulder-clay the outcrops of the Coal and the Six-Yard Limestone can be fixed from the numerous old pits. The higher limestones have been quarried at several localities along their outcrops ; there is a string of old quarries in the Eight-Yard some distance south-west of Besom farm.

      At Healey Cote the Eight-Yard Limestone was just missed in the shaft, but there are quarries in it for road-metal a short distance to the S.S.W. About 22½ feet of limestone are seen here, and the stone is well bedded, dark-grey and crinoidal, with, as usual, Saccamminopsis fusulinaformis.

     The Great Limestone has been worked in several quarries west and north-west of Longframlington. Several old pits in these quarries were sunk to the Top Coal (Townhead of Shilbottle) which usually lies about 12 fathoms below the Great Limestone : an average thickness is 3 feet, in two leaves (top coal, 1 ft. 6 in. to 1 ft. 8 in. ; band, 3 to 8 in. ; bottom coal, 10 in.). Sometimes the band is as much as 2 ft. 8 in. thick. The coal has no great reputation, and seems to have been mined mainly for calcining the limestone.

     The Great Limestone and associated beds are exposed in the burn south of Healey Cote, and the limestone has been wrought for lime-burning in a large quarry to the south-west ; fuel was supplied by adjacent pits to the Top Coal.

      Pauperhaugh, Forest burn Gate, Wards Hill and Tod burn:— About 400 yards N.W. of Healey there are several old pits to a 27 coal said to have been 2 feet thick (with band). On the waste-heaps are fragments of clay-ironstone, shale and limestone, the latter a good, hard, blue stone with Lithostrotion, Productus, and Girvanell 'haloes'. This may be the Oxford Limestone; at no great distance above there is a second seam of coal said to be 18 to 20 inches thick, with a hard ganister-like roof. These beds must lie very close to the large fault which brings them against the Fell Sandstone.

      A coal wrought near Pike House, 1½ miles to the south-west, may be a seam beneath the Oxford, but the limestone itself is not seen until the Forest Burn is reached, 2½ miles to the south-west. Here is the best exposure anywhere within the area of 1-in. Sheet 9. The section begins with a narrow gorge, showing false-bedded, whitish sandstone, covered by 4½ feet of ganister-like rock under 8 feet of greyish, shaly, micaceous sandstone. Then comes the Oxford Limestone, a well-bedded stone about 18 feet thick, and dipping 20° to S.S.E. Near the top, the limestone is nodular and rather flinty, with characteristic Girvanella-like 'haloes,' seen again about the middle of the bed, where they have a reddish weathering. Crinoid and shell-debris abound, along with spines of brachiopods and horn-corals  (Dibunophyllum sp. and Diphyphyllum sp.). The chief brachiopods are Chonetes sp., Dielasma sp., and Pustula sp. There is also Saccamminopsis fusulinaformis, so characteristic of the Acre Limestone of North Northumberland and of the Eight-Yard of this area.

      Overlying the Oxford Limestone is a bed of barren shales with ironstone concretions, about 30 feet thick, surmounted by fine-grained sandstone; a quarry in the north bank shows a 20-ft. face, but the total may be as much as 60 ft. Higher beds are seen at intervals farther downstream ; these are mostly shaly sandstones, shales, and sandy shales, with one thin ochreous-weathering limestone. They call for no special description.

      North of Pauperhaugh a limestone is exposed in a small quarry at Healey. Unfortunately only a few feet can now be seen ; the stone is grey to light-grey, and is encrinital ; other fossils are scarce. This probably lies about midway between the Oxford and Eelwell. A limestone about the same horizon is seen 2½ miles to the south-south-west, in the burn north-west of The Lonning, 100 yards downstream from the railway-crossing. The dip is high, 45° to S.S.E., and the stone is about 12 feet thick, greyish and crinoidal, and lithologically like the limestone at Healey ; there are a few large Productids in the upper posts. Above is a hard, yellowish sandstone which must be about 60 feet thick, while below are sandy shales with some sandstone beds. Nothing further is seen until the Eelwell Limestone is reached. The top 2 feet of this seam are exposed in the Forest Burn near East Row, S.W. of Pauperhaugh, and indeed this is the only undoubted exposure anywhere within the area of the map, although the limestone was got in core borings for the Shilbottle Coal in the Forestburn Gate district. The exposure in the Forest Burn shows a shaly top, rich in 28 Spirifer, and a complete section of the overlying beds—mostly shales with two limestones—up to the Six-Yard Limestone.

      The shales immediately above the Eelwell yielded crinoids, Chonetes cf. laguessiana de Kon., Productus (Eomarginifera) lobatus J. Sow., P. (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., and Spirifer cf. trigonalis (Mart.). The lower of the overlying limestones is seen in the bank and again at two places in the burn, about 5 fathoms above the Eelwell ; it is 6 feet thick, greyish and crinoidal, a variety of Spirifer being locally abundant near the top of the bed. Other fossils noted were :—Productus (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., Aviculopecten ?, ?Cypricardella cf. concentrica Hind., Palaeolima simplex (Phill.), and Solenomya primaeva (Phill.). About 7 fathoms above is a 2-ft. limestone, seen along the top of the bank and again in the Forest Burn north of Bushygap. This limestone is crinoidal, reddish-stained, weathers yellowish to rusty-colour and is rather impure ; it is characterised by a variety of Lithostrotion (Diphyphyllum) sp., and contains in addition Productus (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., and a species of Aviculopecten. These two limestones, together with the Eelwell (27 ft.), and the Six-Yard (18 ft.), were proved in a boring on the roadside south of Forestburn Gate.

     About 4 fathoms higher, and from 4 to 6 fathoms below the Six-Yard Limestone, is the Shilbottle Coal, seen in the bed of the Forest Burn north of Bushygap—the only outcrop now visible in the whole map. The coal has been extensively wrought all over this district. There are many old pits near Pauperhaugh, and all along the face of the hill overlooking the Forest Burn between Bushygap and Wards Hill. The old Forestburn Colliery, alongside the burn north of Bushygap, found the coal at 23 fathoms. The latest pit (abandoned about 1925) was The Lee Colliery on the roadside just west of Low Hesleyhurst. Here the coal was got at 37 fathoms : the beds above were quite normal, both the Eight-Yard and the Six-Yard Limestones being proved in the shaft. South-west from here interleaving sets in; in one place a 3-ft. band separates two leaves of coal, each 12 in. thick.

     In 1922 a boring put down on the roadside 300 yards northwest of Coldside, and south of Forestburn Gate, proved a coal 18 in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. 1 in.; band, 2 in. ; coal, 3 in.) about 8 ft. below an 18-ft. limestone capped by boulder-clay. The coal is thought to represent the Shilbottle, and the limestone the Six-Yard ; if so, neither the Red Bed ' nor the Little Limestone is present, and the coal is only 8 feet below the Six-yard, instead of the usual 4 to 6 fathoms. The boring was carried to a depth of 42 fathoms, the remainder of the strata being quite normal ; the two limestones between the Shilbottle Coal and the Eelwell were both present, with the Eetwell itself, 26 feet thick, at 33 fathoms. A shallow boring to the west got a 15-in coal at 6 fathoms.
Between the Shilbottle Coal and the Six-Yard are, as noted 29 previously, two good ' marks ' for the Shilbottle Coal—the 'Red Bed' and the Little Limestone. Both are seen in the Forest Burn north of Bushygap. The 'Red Bed' is a rusty-weathering, hard, limy sandstone, highly fossiliferous, with Fenestella sp., Buxtonia sp., Dielasma gillingensis (Day.), Meekella cylindrica (M`Coy), Productus (Eomarginifera) lobalus T. Sow., var. laqueatus Muir-Wood, P. (Eomarginifera) cf. spinosus J. Sow., P. sp., Protoschizodus sp., Solenopsis minor M'Coy, and Orthoceras sp. The Little Limestone is a hard, fine-grained, light-greyish crinoidal stone, 2 to 3 ft. in thickness. Although not highly fossiliferous, it yielded a Zaphrentid coral and several brachiopoda, including Productus sp., Spirifer sp. and Athyris sp.

      The Six-Yard Limestone, averaging about 18 feet thick, can be traced without difficulty throughout the area. It is seen in the Forest Burn at Bushygap, where, much disturbed by slips, about 13 feet are exposed. The limestone is greyish to dark-grey, hard and crinoidal. It has not yielded many fossils, but still contains the foraminifer Saccamminopsis fusulinaformis. The limestone again crosses the burn about half a mile upstream, and is not seen again for about 1½ miles, but its position can be marked with certainty from the numerous pits to the Shilbottle Coal. An outcrop crosses the Forest Burn again a short distance below the Inn at Forestburn Gate, where the higher beds of the limestone yielded a small variety of caninoid coral. Some of the measures below are also seen in the stream, including the Little Limestone, and a 6-in. ironstone layer, probably in the shales above the Shilbottle Coal, yielded the following :—Camarotoechia pleurodon? (Ph ill.), Productus sp., Protoschizodus cf. axiniformis (Portl.), Sanguinolites angustatus (Phill.), Streblopteria ornata (R. Eth. junr.), and the gastropod Macrochilina obtusa de Kon.

      Immediately overlying the Six-Yard in this stream-section is a highly fossiliferous shale, abounding in Fenestella and crinoid stems : other fossils found were Lingula scotica Day., Productus sp., [longispinus group], Spirifer cf. bisulcatus J. de C. Sow., Aviculopecten dissimilis (Flem.), Leiopteria obtusa (M'Coy). The shale is noteworthy for its numerous large clay-ironstone concretions : they were wrought and smelted at Brinkburn on the R. Coquet, 2½ miles to the north-east.

      The measures between the Brinkburn Ironstone Shale and the Eight-Yard Limestone are mostly sandstone. This has been wrought a little east of Pauperhaugh, the quarry showing 22 feet of light-grey, fine-grained, micaceous sandstone, dipping south-east at 12° to 15°. A coal, a short distance below the Eight-Yard in the Forestburn Gate district, is seen high up the south bank of the Forest Burn : it is here 1 ft. 8½ in. thick, with at least 10 feet of massive sandstone above and 3½ feet of grey, sandy fireclay below. A 20-ft. fault throws the coal down to stream-level, where on the north bank there is an old abandoned day-level to the coal. This seam (the Freestone Coal is its local name) is probably inconstant, as it was not proved in the shaft of The Lee pit, less than a mile to the north-east.
      30 The Eight-Yard Limestone is well known through the various workings to the Shilbottle Coal, many of the shafts having passed through this bed. It is only seen at the surface in the Forest Burn below Wards Hill, less than half a mile down from Forestburn Gate. The limestone floors the stream for about 400 yards, with the north bank as a dip slope ; it is well bedded, greyish, highly crinoidal, and yellow-weathering, with, as usual, Saccamminopsis fusulinaformis and a few ostracods. Additional fossils are Zaphrentids, a species of Aulophyllum, Martinia sp., and Orthotetids. Beneath are 18 in. of dark-grey shale resting on a 3-in. coal, with 2 ft. of light-grey, rooty fireclay below. Above are 15 feet of blue shales and then about 15 feet of thick-bedded, medium-grained sandstone (quarried) with another 15 feet of more shaly rock on top, the whole making a steep cliff in the south bank of the burn.

      Higher up the bank a coal some distance below the Great Limestone—the Top Coal of the Longframlington district—has been wrought at the outcrop along the face of the hill, both from innumerable shallow shafts and from day-levels (or day-drifts as they are termed in Northumberland). In 1927 the coal was being got from a small level in the hillside, and the section was :—top coal, 1 ft. 5 in. ; band, 4 in. ; bottom coal, 11 in. The seam is covered by 2 ft. of hard, compact, highly fossiliferous, limy shale, which soon crumbles on exposure to air. This roof-stone, particularly rich in crinoids, a small variety of Productus (Eomarginifera) lobatus, Rhynchonellids and a large species of lamellibranch, is apparently the 'Cockle-shell Bed' of the Healey Cote-Longframlington district. The coal rests on a 9-in. fireclay band, underlain by another thin coal (5½ in.), and 4 ft. of highly micaceous sandstone.

      The Great Limestone is conspicuous on Wards Hill (where it is intruded by the Whin Sill), and is again seen at several places to the north-east, towards the two large quarries at Low Hesleyhurst. The stone retains the pale-greyish colour so characteristic of this bed in the Overgrass district to the north, is hard and compact, but apart from crinoid, ossicles is relatively unfossiliferous. The brachiopods include Athyris sp., Chonetes cf. hardrensis Phill., Productus sp. [latissimoid] and Reticularia lineata (Mart.). The overlying shales, however, are more fossiliferous, Spirifer bisulcatus J. de C. Sow. being particularly abundant; other fossils are Fenestella sp., Athyris sp., Productus sp., Pustula sp., Spirifera trigonalis, Spirifer sp., Spiriferina octoplicata? (J. de C. Sow.) and Pinna flabelliformis (Mart.).

      East of the outcrop of the Great Limestone a heavy covering of glacial drift obscures everything until old shafts are reached about three-quarters of a mile east of Low Hesleyhurst, alongside the burn. These were said to have worked an excellent coal, but as the seam was only 16 in. thick the venture was soon abandoned.

     31 Rather higher in the sequence comes the Chirm or Little Limestone Coal, much wrought locally. West and north of Chirm the ground is riddled with old shafts ; the deepest, about half a mile north-east of the farm, reached the coal at 24 fathoms. The boulder-clay covering varies from 5 to 11 fathoms, and measures associated with the coal are exposed only in an indifferent section in the stream (Maglin Burn) half a mile N.N.E. of Chirm. In 1917 the coal, 2 ft. 2 in. thick, was being wrought at a mine on the roadside, three-quarters of a mile from Low Hesleyhurst, on the way to Todburn. The section was : top coal, 8 in ; band, 1 in. ; bottom coal, 1 ft. 5 in. ; and the dip was 4½° in a direction 12° S. of E. Shales on the airshaft waste heap yielded a marine fauna including crinoids, Productus (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., Lingula squamiformis Phill., Sanguinolites sp., Posidonomya corrugata R. Eth. junr., and Pterinopecten sp. Several other shafts passed through a bed of 'grey whin' about 6 feet thick, lying about 5 fathoms above the coal. This may be the Little Limestone, a bed not exposed anywhere within the area of this memoir.

      The outcrop of the Chirm Coal can be traced with certainty in a northerly direction as far as Westerheugh ; here the 'band' thickens, and a shaft 170 yards west of the farm proved : top coal, 10 in. ; band 34 in. ; coal (wrought) 16 in. North of this point nothing definite is known of the seam, but it doubtless overlies the thick sandstone on the Coquet at Brinkburn Priory and may be the 2-ft. coal proved at 14 fathoms in a boring at the junction of the Tod Burn with the Coquet. About 100 yds. south of Chirm the outcrop of the coal is shifted about 500 yds. to the west by a fault down south 12 fathoms, and trending west towards Coldrife.

      Little is seen of overlying strata, although there is an old limestone quarry, 600 yds. long, about half a mile east of Chirm. The workings are very old, and are almost completely grassed over. The limestone, probably the equivalent of that at Coat Yards, appears to be of normal crinoidal type, and yielded the following- :—Lithostrotion junceum (Flem.), Camarotoechia pleurodon (Phill.), Productus sp., Schellwienella?, Pinna flabelliformis (Mart.).

      Beyond a few indifferent sections, seen at intervals in the Tod Burn, there are no further exposures until the Todburn limestone quarries are reached. Most of these are now abandoned, but a face 8 ft. high can still be seen in the quarry between Todburn and North Birks. The rock is bluish-grey, hard and flinty, and the following were collected from the waste-heaps :—Camarotoechia pleurodon (Phill.), Cleithyridina royssii (L'Eveillé), ? Composita ambigua (J. Sow.), Productus (Gigantella) latissimus J. Sow., Schizophoria resupinata (Mart.), Pinna flabelliformis (Mart.), Sanguinolites, Bellerophon? and a fish-tooth. The limestone is seen again in the burn between Todburn and Wholme.

    32 Shales and sandstone (the latter coarse and weathering to a gravel near North Birks) above the limestone are surmounted by two coals. About half a mile S.S.E. of Todburn a trial shaft to the lower found the seam at 19 fathoms and the section was : coal, 1 ft. 6 in. ; band, 11 in. ; bottom coal, 1 ft. 1 in. An old shaft to the higher coal was said to be 8 to 9 fathoms deep and the seam showed the following section : coal, 1 ft. 1 in. ; band, 2 ft. ; coal, 11 in. : the inclination was 4° to the S.W. Fragments of splinty coal on the old pit-heap suggest a correlation with the upper of the two Netherwitton Coals.

      In this drift-covered region, with rock-sections few and far between, it is impossible to arrive at any sound estimate of the thickness of the measures above the Great Limestone. That given in the published 6-inch Northumberland (New Series) Sheet 50 S.W. was calculated on scanty data, and may be an exaggerated one. It will be recalled that 4½° was the inclination recorded in the Chirm Coal workings, abandoned in 1917, and Topley, in his original survey, gave 4° for the workings in the higher of the two coals at Todburn. On an average of 4½° the thicknesses of the measures above the Great Limestone are as follows :—




      Fallowlees to Netherwitton .—The heathery moorlands around Fallowlees are for the most part covered by peat and drift. Rock is only occasionally seen in isolated knolls or in scattered stream-sections.

      Between the Forest and Newbigin Burns there are no exposures of the Oxford Limestone or associated beds, but in the latter stream about 14 feet of this limestone are seen. The stone is hard, greyish, rather, flinty, and there are the usual Girvanella 'haloes,' dark-grey in the fresh rock and reddish on weathered surfaces. The limestone is crinoidal and coralline [Lithostrotion junceum (Flem.), Palaeosmilia murchisoni Edw. & Haime, and Syringopora sp .]. Underlying sandstones are exposed at intervals, and one particularly large quarry provided the sandstone for the railway viaduct over the River Font, about 1½ miles to the south-east. The limestone reappears a mile to the S.W. in the Fallowlees Burn, due south of Fallowlees farmstead, and at intervals for about a mile upstream. Here it is crystalline, very hard and flinty and mostly greyish in colour ; the Girvanella nodules are quite often centred on crinoid ossicles or other fossil debris. The dip hereabouts is low, about 3° to 5°. As in the Forest Burn (p. 27) there is a ganister sandstone from 2½ feet thick, 12 feet or so below the limestone ; it is buff-coloured, even in grain and full of rootlets, but the stone is scarcely hard enough to rank as a first-quality ganister. Traces of a lower limestone were noticed near Redpath.
      Along the Fallowlees Burn sandstone rests directly on the Oxford Limestone—an unusual feature. Higher limestones of normal 33 grey crinoidal type appear at intervals in the lower reaches of the stream, just below its junction with the Newbigin Burn. All the exposures are poor, and only in one case can more than 2 feet of limestone be seen.

      Eastwards nothing further is known until, the Shilbottle Coal is reached at Whitehouse Colliery, on the east side of the railway, about 500 yards north of Ritton White House. The pit, long abandoned, is in a small glacial overflow-channel which exposes the upper beds of the Six-Yard Limestone, hardly more than 30 ft. above the coal. The coal, said to be 2 ft. 3 in. thick and dipping south-by-east at 6½°, appears to have been wrought only around the shaft ; to the south it is said to be pinched out by a band in the seam and beyond that point no further workings are known. This is the southernmost working in the Shilbottle Coal.

      The Six-Yard Limestone is seen again in the railway-cutting hard by. The Eight-Yard outcrop is inferred from those of the Six-Yard below and of the Great Limestone above.

      The gently undulating outcrop of the Great Limestone has been extensively quarried over a distance of half a mile in the Ritton White House district, the rock being calcined on the spot. Apart from local dolomitization, the limestone still retains the pale-greyish appearance so characteristic of the stone in the Overgrass district, but it is far more fossiliferous. A large Productid abounds in the upper beds, along with crinoid ossicles and a few ostracods, while Chaetetes is particularly abundant. In the southernmost quarry, about 300 yards S. of Ritton White House, some overlying beds are also exposed (Plate IV, A) the section at the face being :—


    Ft. In.
    Soil 1 6
    Shales 6
    Brown clay 0
    Brown sandstone with casts of crinoid stems, brachiopods and other shells 0
    Micaceous shales 14  0
Shales 0
Limestone thick-bedded 12-20  0


         The brown, shelly sandstone 14 feet above the limestone represents that above the Great in the Delf Burn (see p. 38). There are no exposures of the overlying measures up to the Chirm Coal (mined around Coldrife), and their estimated thickness of 400 ft. on the published six-inch map (58 N.E.) may well be exaggerated.
      The Chirm or Rothley Coal has been wrought all along the crop from the Chirm-Coldside Fault to beyond Ewesley. The majority of the pits are shallow, although a few must be at least 30 fathoms deep. They must be of ancient date, for they are marked as "Coal. workings (disused)" on the original topographical maps, surveyed as far back as 1863. Traced by these old shafts the outcrop is twice shifted by faults in the neighbourhood of Coltpark. Thence the strike turns southwards towards the River Font and 34 again south-west to Ewesley Station ; 260 yards east-south-east of that point a shaft is said to have got a 22-inch coal of good quality at 19 fathoms. Farther south there are few pits until the Rothley district is reached, so that there is probably an impoverishment for about a mile along the strike. From pit-heaps half a mile or so east of Coldside, clay-ironstone fragments yielded crinoid ossicles, brachiopods, lamellibranchs and gastropods. Among the fossils noted were Martinia sp., Productus (Productus) cf. productus (Mart.), Ctenodonta sp. and Bellerophon sp. A few specimens of Lingula were also seen in the waste-heaps west of Coltpark. These fossiliferous horizons are probably not more than 10 ft. above the Chirm seam.

      The Little Limestone should come some way above the Chirm Coal, but its outcrop is a matter of inference only, all that is seen of the beds overlying the coal being some sandstones and shales in the stream south-west of Combhill, Ewesley.

      In his survey about 50 years ago Topley noted a limestone at Coltpark, and a further exposure, 8 ft. thick, in a quarry 500 yds. to the south-east, where fragments of a hard, pale-grey, crinoidal limestone can still be found. This may be about the horizon of the thin limestone 75 ft. above the Cushat or Little Limestone in the recent (Nov., 1933) Hazon Lee water-bore (see Appendix I, p. 143).

      A higher bed was quarried and burnt for lime about 500 yds. N.W. of. Coat Yards. This is the Coat Yards Limestone, and, associated with calcareous shales, is again seen between Ritton and Nunnykirk, in a small stream flowing into the River Font. The section reads :—


Ft. In.
Limestone 0 9
Limy shales 0 6
Shaly limestone 1 0
Shales 0 3
Limestone 0 3½
Limestone 3 0
Limestone in bands 1 8


      These strata, 7½ ft. in all, rest on several feet of dark-grey shale. Above are four feet of fossiliferous limy shales with limestone nodules, covered by blue shales. A gap follows, and then a 2-ft. band of shaly limestone on calcareous shales.

      Thick sandstone and shales, probably some distance below the Coat Yards Limestone, outcrop in the north bank of the River Font close by. The large quarry at Nunnykirk shows :-


Ft. In.
Sandstone, yellow, micaceous, with carbonaceous streaks 8 0
Shales, grey, rather sandy, with plant-remains 6 0
Coal and shale 1 0
Sandstone, hard, pale-yellow, coarse, with
false-bedding at high angles
10 0
Shales, bluish-grey 8 6
Sandstone 10+  


35These measures dip south-east about 10°.
        The beds overlying the Coat Yards Limestone seem to include two coals, the higher probably at least 100 ft. above the limestone. There is an old shaft to the lower seam quite close to the limestone quarry, and a more recent one to the higher coal about 200 yards N.E. of Coat Yards farm. The latter shaft reached the coal at 12½ fathoms, and the seam was 1 ft. 10 in. thick. Only a small area round the shaft seems to have been mined, and the coal dips 1 in 12 (a little less than 5°) towards the south. There are no beds of any stratigraphical value above this until the Netherwitton Coals are reached. These were once actively mined between Folly House and Coal Houses, about a mile or so N.N.W. of the village of Netherwitton. Two seams have been wrought here—the Netherwitton Top and Bottom Coals. They are as a rule separated by about 8 or 9 fathoms of measures, mostly shales. A limestone, probably the Todburn, lies 10 fathoms or so below the lower coal, and is poorly exposed in the burn 300 yards N.W. of Folly House. A short distance below there is a 15-in. coal of poor quality.

      The lower Netherwitton Coal outcrops in Follyhouse Gill, and there are innumerable pits hereabouts. The higher seam outcrops beneath Folly House, and a pit on the roadside, less than 300 yards to the south, got the coal at 15 feet. The pits around Coal Houses are slightly deeper ; the shaft-section of one 180 yards north of the houses showed :—

          Hard freestone.

          Limestone 4 ft. at 8 fathoms.
          TOP COAL 2 ft to 2 ft. 6 in. at 15 fathoms.
          BOTTOM COAL 2 ft. 6 in. at 24 fathoms.

      Another shaft 600 yards east of Coal Houses went 14 fathoms to the Top Coal. Parroty or splinty debris in the waste-heaps may come from the band in the coal referred to by Topley as " hard black and slaty."

About 7 fathoms above the Top Coal is a 2-ft. limestone under (in one shaft) 18 feet of danty ' ( ? earthy) limestone. This is poorly exposed in a beck 400 yards 11° south of east from Coal Houses, and to the south a string of pits probably passed through it. These pits reached the Top Coal at 14 fathoms, and are so aligned as to suggest that they are all drained by a level which discharges into the River Font at Newpark Wood.
Workings in the Netherwitton Coals appear to end to the north about 230 yards north-east of Folly House, at a fault apparently 8 to 10 fathoms down north. An 11-fathom shaft hereabouts got no coal, and probably lies on the north side of the trouble. Beyond this point there are no traces of workings until the Todburn district 36 is reached, where some attempts have been made to reach the coals (see p. 32). To the south considerable workings are known in the Longwitton district (p. 39).

      Measures higher in the sequence are exposed between Netherwitton and Parkhead, towards the south-east end of Newpark Wood. Here there are several quarries in gritty and pebbly sandstone, and gritty sandstone appears at the surface east and south of Parkhead. A quarry 300 yards east-north-east of Parkwall shows 12 feet of gritty sandstone, the top 6 feet of which weathers to a gravelly 'shiver.'

      Greenleighton, Hartington and Longwitton.—The local sequence here ranges from strata just above the Oxford Limestone to those over the Netherwitton Coals, a total thickness approaching 1,600 feet. Unfortunately exposures are very poor, and especially so below that invaluable datum-line, the Great Limestone. The Little Limestone Coal (or Chirm Seam), though not of so much importance as in the districts to the south, has nevertheless been extensively wrought in past times around Rothley. West of Longwitton the Netherwitton Coals have been mined to a small extent.

      Probably the most valuable, and certainly the most continuous section anywhere in this region is to be found along the Hart Burn. From the Mill south of Rothley to Garden House, N.E. of Angertonmoor exposures are more or less continuous for about three miles and are sufficiently noteworthy to be described in a separate section (p. 40). The low angle of dip is a feature of the country along the southern margin of one-inch Sheet 9 and leads to a broad outcrop of the Upper Limestone Group. The limestones appearing in the south-west corner of the map are probably about the same horizon as those above the Oxford Limestone around Fallowlees. They call for little remark, as the exposures are poor and isolated, while the limestones show little character ; they are all of normal, grey, crinoidal type and lithologically similar.

     The sequence begins to the west of Catcherside, about 150 feet above the Oxford Limestone. The outcrops of several of the overlying limestones are marked by swallow-holes and green features, but rock is rarely seen. Near Harwood House two limestones, probably about 40 to 50 ft. apart, are known some distance below the Six-Yard. The outcrop of the lower is marked by a line of swallow-holes, and below there is a ridge of hard, white, ganister-like sandstone with Stigmaria, dipping at 5° to E.S.E. The higher limestone is also marked by swallow-holes, and in addition 8 ft. of pale-grey stone are seen in a small quarry. This bed must be about 20 fathoms below the Six-Yard, and may represent the Eelwell Limestone.
      The Six-Yard and Eight-Yard Limestones outcrop on either side of Greenleighton. Swallow-holes alone are seen, although a boring south of the farm proved the Six-Yard, 19 feet thick, overlying 7 in. of white marl and 3 ft. of whin.' To the south both outcrops are purely a matter of inference. 37

The Great Limestone is in every way the most important bed in this district, and it has been extensively worked at Greenleighton quarries. The stone, in places, still retains the pale-greyish, pink-tinged appearance so characteristic of the limestone in more northern localities, although some of the beds are coarser and more grey than usual. The following is a detailed section towards the south end of the quarry :—



Ft. In.
Brownish clay with small stones 2 6
Limestone 0 6
Clay 0 2
Limestone 2 0
Black shales with crinoid ossicles, Productids and Spirifer 2 0
Limestone with cauda-galli markings 2 6
Shale parting 0 1
Limestone 0 5
Limestone, bedded 5 4
Black shales, rich in Spirifer 0 10½
Limestone, bedded, crinoidal 20 6


       This gives a total of 36 feet without reaching the base, said to lie on a 4-in. coal a few feet below. The full thickness of the Great Limestone hereabouts is therefore about 40 ft. The stone was in past times calcined on the spot, but now is only quarried for road-metal as occasion demands. Fossils are far more abundant than to the north. As in the group of quarries to the south of Ritton White House (p. 33), Chaetetes is fairly abundant, besides the characteristic Lonsdaleia. An average assemblage at Greenleighton is :—Sponge remains, Chaetetes septosus (Flem.)
Dibunophyllum sp., Lonsdaleia floriformis (Mart.) near mut. laticlavia S. Smith, Tabulipora sp., Productus aff. giganteus (Mart.), Productus latissimus J. Sow., Productus longispinus J. Sow., Spirifer bisulcatus J. de C. Sow., Spirifer semicircularis Phill., Orthoceras sp.

     On the high ground to the east of the quarries are three well-marked ridges of overlying strata. The lowest is a white ganisterlike sandstone, the next a white, fine-grained, crystalline, siliceous sandstone, and the top one a white sandstone. To the south a small fault shifts the beds to the west, and the limestone is again seen in a small overgrown quarry 300 yards N.W. of Rothley Shiel West. Close to the house is another opening in the overlying crystalline, siliceous sandstone, dipping 8° to the S.E. The next outcrop of the Great Limestone is at Gallows Hill, where a 12-ft. face can still be seen the stone is well-bedded, with much calcite both as veins and crystals ; the dip is 13° to the S.S.E. As at Hartington (where the limestone is repeated by a strike-fault which passes close to Gallows Hill), it has lost its characteristic pale-creamy, pinkish look and altogether coarser 38 and darker. Hartington quarry is fairly large, and an old limekiln shows that the rock was once burnt for lime. In this vicinity there is a good natural exposure in the Delf Burn to the east, the limestone dipping about 10° to the S.S.E. Above it are 10 ft. of limy shales full of Chonetes, then 5 ft. of shale with limy, crinoidal ribs, and on top of all 4 to 5-ft. bedded limestone, weathering pale-yellow. This is probably one of the 'tumbler beds,' as they are known in the lead-mining fields south of the Tyne. From Hartington to the edge of one-in. Sheet 9 neither the Great nor Eight-Yard Limestones are seen again, but quarries, just beyond the margin of the map, allow their outcrops to be inferred with some degree of accuracy.

      Above the Great Limestone the first stratigraphical position of importance is the Rothley or Little Limestone Coal. As in the Ewesley country, the Little Limestone itself is never seen, but it has been proved in many borings in the Chirm district immediately to the north, whilst a few miles beyond the southern margin of Sheet 9 it averages 14 feet in thickness, with the coal 5 fathoms below.

      Workings to the Rothley Coal are all of ancient date, and are mostly confined to a small area immediately north of Rothley Lakes. There are several old shafts, 500 yards north of Rothley Shiel East, quite close to the road. One of the more northerly ones reached the coal at 30 fathoms, but the seam was too thin to work. This thinning apparently extends some distance to the north, as the coal does not seem to have been worked between here and Ewesley Station, about a mile to the north-east.

      In several borings put down a short distance north of Rothley Lakes the coal had a steady average thickness of about 20 inches. The largest pit appears to have been Rothley Shiel Colliery, which lies about 250 yards N.W. of Rothley Shiel East, and is said to be from 15 to 20 fathoms in depth. A shaft about 250 yards S.W. of the farmhouse reached the coal at 6 fathoms, the water draining south-eastwards into Rothley Lakes ; workings to the south of this shaft stopped at a fault 15 or 20 fathoms down south, beyond which the coal has never been mined.

     The glacial cover around Rothley is thin, and rock is exposed here and there at the surface. About 30 ft. of coarse sandstone, overlying the coal, are seen in the railway-cutting west of Rothley Lakes. The rock is yellowish, massive, false-bedded, and weathers to a gravel ; it may represent the lower portion of the Rothley Grits.

      A 12-inch coal, overlying sandstone, was at one time exposed in the railway at Longwitton Station, but the section is now quite obscured. How far this is above the Rothley seam is uncertain.

      About 60 ft. or so above the Rothley Coal coarse, pebbly sandstones (the Rothley Grits) are a prominent local feature. Their outcrop at Rothley Crags is over half a mile long, with steep westward-facing scarps up to 120 ft. in height. 39They are massive, false-bedded felspathic grits, with quartz pebbles up to 1½ in. long ; some of the beds are particularly massive and pebbly, one such presenting an unbroken face quite 30 ft. high (see Plate III, A). North of this, coarse, felspathic grits reappear in the fields at Rothley Cross Roads, and again in prominent crags on the roadside east of the Lakes. On the crest, and built from the grits, is a curious incomplete structure known as 'Codger Castle,' said to have been started to provide employment during a time of great hardship, as also was 'Sharpe's Folly,' a tower at Whitton.
        Four hundred yards east of Longwitton Station is a small exposure of limestone, which, if in situ, may be the equivalent of that at Coltpark. Lithologically, however, it is so very similar to the Great Limestone of Greenleighton that it seems more probable it is a glacial erratic of that rock. East of this, flaggy sandstones are seen at intervals down the Ewesley Burn, and old coal-workings were noted in the south bank 1¼ miles below Longwitton Station. There appear to have been two separate seams, associated with shales containing clay-ironstone nodules up to 1 ft. in diameter. There is a thin limestone not far below. There were at one time indications of workings, probably to the same coals, on the roadside about 500 yards east of the Rothley Cross Roads, and a bore near by is said to have proved a coal 1 ft. 3 in. thick at 52 feet from the surface. These coals are certainly above the Rothley Grits ; Dr Stanley Smith considers that they represent the Netherwitton Coals worked about a mile to the east. Such a view requires a considerable strike-fault down north-west, for which no real evidence can be adduced. More probably they are the Coat Yards seams (north of the River Font), with which they are in general alignment.

      There are no exposures of overlying measures, but there are pits to the Netherwitton Coals on the north side of the road, midway between Rothley Cross Roads and Longwitton, the chief one being marked on the 6-in. map as 'Longwitton Colliery (disused).' This is said to have reached the Top Coal at 18½ fathoms and the Bottom Coal at 29 fathoms, with an air-shaft 22 fathoms to the Bottom seam. An examination of a plan of the workings of this colliery failed to reveal which of the two coals had been worked. A little south of the shaft the coal wrought is only 1 ft. 3 in. thick and dips at 6° to the S.E. West of the shaft it is 2 ft. 2 in., reaching a maximum of 3 ft. 200 yards N.N.E. of the pit, and maintaining this thickness along the eastern limits of the workings. To the north-north-east the workings are within half a mile of the shaft, whilst the width of the wrought area from the outcrop is never more than 400 yards. As only a relatively small area of coal has been mined, probably less than half a square mile, there should be a large area intact between the Longwitton road and the River Font. North of the Font the coals have been mined around Folly House and Coal Houses (see p. 35).

     40 South of the shaft of Longwitton Colliery the coal, as already mentioned, thins to 1 ft. 3 in. ; how far this attenuation extends southwards it is difficult to say, but less than a mile to the south there are traces of shallow pits, probably to the upper seam. Both coals were at one time wrought farther south, along the Hart Burn.
At Longwitton, as at Coal Houses, limestone is known both above and below the coals, the outcrops in the Hart Burn being discussed separately below.

      There are few exposures of interest in the country between Longwitton and Netherwitton ; what little is seen suggests that this somewhat featureless region is occupied by a broad outcrop of gently undulating strata. Some distance above the Netherwitton Coals about 20 ft. of yellow, soft, gritty sandstone are seen in a quarry at North Heugh House, dipping somewhat north of east. Near by, at Hillend House, impure ganister-like rock dips to the south-east. Nothing is seen in the two miles between here and the stream at Longlee, where there is a coal-drift in the bank-side, but on so small a scale that the seam was probably of little account ; associated measures seen in the burn are mostly sandstone and grits, with some thin fireclays. A second coal has been wrought close by in Old Park Wood, and the drift, 8 ft. above stream-level, can still be examined. The dip here to S.E. is very low, and the coal seldom exceeds 9 in. in thickness. The following section could be made out just within the mine-mouth :—


Ft. In.
Shaly sandstone 0 4
Sandy shales 0 8
Shales, blue 0 8
Coal 0 9
Fireclay 0 3
Fireclay, dark-grey, sandy, with plant traces 1 6+


      Hart Burn.—There are good sections in this stream for three miles below the Mill, down to the margin of the one-inch map ; probably no more than 400 ft. of strata are involved, without making allowance for measures cut out by a fault, of unknown throw, east of Rothley Lodge. The section begins, just below the Mill, in the Rothley Grits, of which at least 100 ft. are seen without reaching the base. Above are 20 feet of blue shales, with sandstone courses, then calcareous shales containing crinoids, brachiopods and bryozoa, and finally a blue crinoidal limestone, poorly exposed. The following is a list of the fossils collected from the shales underlying the limestone :—Aulophyllum fungites (Flem.), crinoid ossicles, Avonia youngiana? (Day.), Productus (Dictyoclostus) cf. costatus J. de C. Sow., Productus (Gigantella) latissimus J. Sow., Productus (Eomarginifera) longispinus J. Sow., Pustula aculeata (Mart.), Pustula punctata (Mart.), Reticularia lineata (Mart.), Schizophoria resupinata (Mart.), Spirifer sp., Palaeolima simplex (Phill.). The section is much obscured by slips of boulder-clay.

    41 The limestone may represent the Coltpark bed, but one must admit that there is no trace above it of anything resembling the Coat Yards Limestone and associated measures, exposed in the Font north of Nunnykirk. These may be cut out by a fault seen half a mile below the Mill. Overlying measures downstream are mostly coarse brown sandstone, at least 40 feet thick, passing up into sandy shales, and these into blue unfossiliferous shales. Resting on the latter is a 1 to 2-ft. band of limestone, covered by 10 ft. of highly fossiliferous, calcareous shales with limestone ribs, yielding the following rich and varied marine fauna :—Pemmatites ? (a sponge), Aulophyllum fungites (Flom.), mut. pachyendothecum S. Smith, Dibunophyllum sp., Zaphrentis sp., crinoid ossicles, Athyris cf. laniellosa L'Eveille, Chonetes cf. hardrensis Phill., Chonetes cf. tuberculata M'Coy, Composita sp., Dielasma hastata? (J. de C. Sow), Lingula squamiformis Phill ., Productus (Dictyoclostus) costatus J. de C. Sow., Productus (Dictyoclostus) cf. hindi Muir-Wood, Productus (Gigantella) latissimus J. Sow., Productus (Eomarginifera) longispinus J. Sow., Productus (Dictyoclostus) pugilis Phill., Pustula aculeata (Mart.), Pustula cf. defensa I. Thomas, Pustula cf. punctata (Mart.), Pustula spinulosa (J. Sow.), Reticularia ineata (Mart.), Schizorphio sp., Spirifer bisulcatus J. de C. Sow., cf. Spirifer acutus (Mart.), Spiriferina insculpta (Phill.), Aviculopecten sp., Capulus intermedius de Kon., Euomphalus sp.

      Above the shales is a 3-ft. limestone (bluish, crinoidal, and impure) containing brachiopods, bryozoa and lamellibranchs. This bed, together with the underlying shales and thin limestone, is most likely the Todburn Limestone known to the north beneath the Netherwitton Coals. The overlying 6 ft. of shales are calcareous, and yielded the following :—

      Crinoid ossicles, Chonetes hardrensis Phill., Livgula squamiformis Phill ., Productus (Gigantella) latissimus j. Sow., Productus (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., Spirifer bisulcatus J. de C. Sow., Schizophoria resupinata (Mart.), Aviculopecten sp., Cypricardella parallela Phill., Pterinopecten cf. granosus (J. de C. Sow.), Solenopsis ?.
About 60 ft. of measures (the lower half mostly in shales, the upper half in massive sandstone) intervene between the limestone and the lower of the Netherwitton Coals. This lower coal, now no longer exposed, was said by the late Professor Lebour to be 1 ft. 6 in. thick. Above it, but imperfectly seen, are about 45 ft. of strata, apparently mostly shales, with a 4-in. limestone rib near the top. Then comes the higher Netherwitton Coal, no longer seen, although there are many traces of old shafts. A 6-in. coal in the burn-side may well be that proved in several of the shafts in the Netherwitton country, between the Top and Bottom Coals. In the 60 ft. of succeeding strata shales and sandy shales predominate with, near the middle, a 15-ft. bed of coarse, calcareous grit, 42 and near the top the following section exposed in the north bank, 500 yards north of Angertonmoor :—


  Ft. In.
Limestone, grey, crinoidal at least 12 0
Shales, limy, fossiliferous   2 8
Limestone, grey, crinoidal   2 6
Shales, limy, fossiliferous   1 8
Coal, bright   0 4
Fireclay, sandy   0 1
Sandstone, with rootlets at least 1 0


      The limy shales under the upper post limestone yielded :—

      Fenestella sp., Buxtonia scabricula (Mart.), Productus (Productus) cf. carbonarius de Kon, Productus (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., Productus (Dictyoclostus) muricatus Phill., Productus (Dictyoclostus) pugilis Phill., Schellwienella crenistria (Phill.), Schizophoria resupinata (Mart.).

      A limestone at this position above the Netherwitton Coals is well known where these seams have been wrought north of Netherwitton. The limestone and associated shales reappear in the south bank of the Hart Burn 300 yards to the south-east, and the section is :—


  Ft. In.
Shales, blue at least 12 0
Limestone, hard, impure   1 8
Shales, dark-grey, limy, fossiliferous   1 3
Limestone, grey, crinoidal   3 0
Gap   5 0
Shales, with Productus   0 2
Coal   0 1
Shales   0 2
Sandstone with rootlets at least 1 0


       These strata dip 3° to N.N.E., and are seen again farther down the burn, about 200 yards east of Garden House, near the edge of the one-inch sheet. Here they are covered by 14 ft. of dark-grey shale underlying a thick bed of yellow sandstone, of which 10 feet at least are exposed.

      Stanton and Pigdon.—Measures outcropping in the Stanton district belong to the highest members of the Upper Limestone Group. Exposures are again isolated and discontinuous, the only good section being along the River Font, between Stanton Fence and the southern edge of the area at Coal House, Newton Park.

      The main datum-line is the Stanton Limestone with its overlying coal. Other limestones are known in Dixon's Wood and at Pigdon, the latter poorly exposed and better known from a recent boring for water (1931-1932), north of Morpeth.

      Beginning with the lowest limestones, namely those seen in Dixon's Wood, exposures here are rather disappointing. There are at least two faults of unknown, but probably small, throw where the section begins 400 yds. S.E. of the Tower. The first limestone met with is 3 ft. thick, and is of normal grey crinoidal type, 43 with Chaetetes septosus (Flem.). It is covered by sandstone, and farther downstream is 4 ft. of grey, crystalline limestone, associated with a soft yellow rock (either weathered calcareous shale or decomposed limestone), which appears intermittently in the stream. As the measures are rather flat it is difficult to say to what extent the exposures may be repetitions of the same beds.

      The Stanton Limestone has been quarried at many places around Stanton, and can be traced almost continuously for over two miles to the north, past the abandoned workings at Haredene and so to the farm of Smallburn, on Longhorsley Moor. The best exposures are around Stanton, where the bed outcrops along the 550-ft. contour, north of Stanton House. Farther east it reappears as a small inlier, and the large quarry here shows :—


Ft. In.
Dark-grey shales 8 0
Limy shales 1 6
Limestone, Upper Post, a mass of small crinoid
ossicles with occasional tiny greenish patches
2 6
Limy shales with limestone ribs 3 0
Limestone 0 9
Limy shales, highly fossiliferous, with thin limestone ribs and lenticles 6 0
Limestone, Main Post, greyish, crinoidal, and with
Productus latissimus
2    0+


       It is said that a lower 7-ft. post of limestone was at one time mined. A general collection from this quarry gave :—

      Aulophyllum fungites (Flem.), Productus (Gigantella) latissimus J. Sow., Productus (Dictyoclostus) pugilis Phill., Productus (Dictyoclostus) semireticulatus (Mart.), Productus (Productus) cf. sulcatus J. Sow., Pustula cf. punctata (Mart.), Euomphalus sp.

      South-west of Stanton House the rock was quarried and burnt for lime, but here again the Bottom or Main Post cannot now be seen. The dip hereabouts is very low—about 4° to S.S.E.

      It should be noted that the Stanton Limestone, with its characteristic Upper Post, was got at the bottom of the Morpeth water-boring (Appendix I, p. 144).

      About 15 ft. above the Limestone lies the Stanton Coal, extensively wrought in past times around Stanton and on Longhorsley Moor. There are traces of innumerable old shallow pits all along the crop, and in addition a water-level was driven from the side of the main road, about half a mile north-north-west of Mooredge Cottage. The level, which was about 300 yds. long, was three years under construction, probably more on account of the few workmen employed rather than because of any difficulties encountered in mining. The coal was eventually reached near Horsley High Barns, and an air-shaft to the seam at this point is 99½ feet deep. The shaft-section was :—clay, 11 ft., post, 12 ft., 'blue,' 76½ ft. The coal, 2 ft. thick and dipping 2 inches in the yard (i.e., 3°) to E. by N., was only worked over a very small area ; the mine was abandoned in September, 1913. From here south-westwards towards44 Stanton the ground near the outcrop is riddled with old workings, and during the miners' strike of 1926 the seam was opened up at several places. At one of these, 500 yards north of Stanton House, the roof of the coal was a brownish sandstone with traces of shells. About 250 yards to the south-east this roof-stone changed to the more usual blue shale with marine fossils, the coal resting on a good, greyish fireclay. In the dene, about 160 yards east of Stanton House, the coal, 10 to 12 feet below stream-level, lies in a trough between two small faults which pass close to the house. South of the trough the coal is again thrown some distance to the east of the dene (the Stanton Limestone appears as a small inlier in the dene-bottom) and has been worked near its outcrop, and also at the mouth of the dene. From this point the outcrop strikes up the hillside west of the dene and thence S.S.W. past Stanton. About 300 yards north of the latter place the coal is at present being got from a small mine on the outcrop, where it is. 2 ft. to 2 ft. 4 in. thick, and frequently shows the 'peacock lustre' generally characteristic of the seam. Old workings are a constant source of trouble ; the coal seems to have been worked farther east than was expected, and some distance east of the road faint hollows or depressions indicate the positions of old shafts. One of these, at present being opened out, was found to be filled in with gravel and boulders.

      The hamlet of Stanton is built on sandstone, a quarry there still showing about 10 ft. of medium-grained, false-bedded rock. About 20 ft. under this a 20-in. coal is said to have been proved. This must be above the Stanton Coal, and may represent a 16-in. seam, noted in a shaft recently reopened about 600 yards E. by N. of Stanton House. It was there 84 ft. above the Stanton Coal, and 12 ft. from the surface.

      Amongst overlying strata, less than half a mile S.E. of Stanton, there is a small quarry in gritty sandstone. As the intervening ground is almost a dip-slope this is probably the upper part of the Stanton sandstone. It is felspathic, as it also is about half a mile south of Beacon Hill, where coarse, pebbly sandstone reappears. These exposures are probably all about the same horizon, not far above the Stanton Coal.

      South of Beacon Hill are many old shafts, their alignment suggesting a water-level whose exit is seen 300 yards N.N.W. of Abshiel. It is uncertain whether these pits were sunk to the Stanton Coal or to the Parrot Coal, 8 to 12 fathoms higher, which is well displayed in the banks of the Font S.W. of Maiden Hall. Fragments of parrot coal abound in the debris around most of the old shafts, but quite possibly both seams were got.

      There are no more rock-exposures until the Pigdon district is reached. Here, in Blagdon Burn, shales with plant-remains, fire-clays and a 6-in. parrot coal outcrop beneath a bed of sandstone, which was once quarried. At no great distance above, blocks of limestone are seen here and there at the surface, and there are one 45or two swallow-holes about. This is doubtless the same limestone whose roof-shales are seen in quarries south of the road at Pigdon. The limestone, 22 ft. 11 in. thick, was struck at 15 ft. 9 in. in a boring in the well at Benridge Hag. A fully detailed record was got in the Morpeth water-boring (see Appendix I, p. 144), about half a mile S.E. of Warreners House. Here the limestone, 28 ft. thick, was reached at 45½ fathoms (35 fathoms below rock-head). It was bedded, greyish and crinoidal, and was shaly at the top and bottom, with the central portion rather impure. The rock yielded a fair number of shells, a large variety of Productus (Gigantella) being particularly abundant. Other fossils were-:—Aulophyllum
fungites (Flem.), Dibunophyllum sp., crinoid ossicles, Chonetes cf. hardrensis Phill., Productus (Gigantella) latissimus J. Sow., Productus (Gigantella) sp., Pustula punctata (Mart.), Reticularia lineata (Mart.), Aviculopecten dissimilis (Flem.), Streblopteria? Euomphalus sp.

      From the head-waters of the Lyne down to the Font this Morpeth water-boring is the sole source of our knowledge as to the strata between the Pigdon Limestone and the base of the Millstone Grit. The record is invaluable, for the site is so far south that a reasonably secure correlation with the Tyne sequence is assured. A careful examination of the large and continuous set of cores was made, and the following is a condensed version of the sequence as far as the Pigdon Limestone :—


  Thickness Depth
Fms Ft. In. Fms Ft. In.
Surface deposits 12 0 0 12  0 0
Gritstone 2 3 0 14 3 0
Strata 0 3 0 15 0 0
Ganister 0 3 0 15 3 0
Soft shale 2 3 0 18 0 0
Coal 0 0 6 18 0 6
Strata 7 0 0 25 0 0
Coal 0 1 9 25 2 3
Strata 1 0 9 26 3 0
Soft shale 1 0 0 27 3 0
Strata 1 0 0 28 3 0
Hard and soft shale 6 3 0 35 0 0
Strata 10 2 0 45 2 0
Limestone (PIGDON) 4 4 0 50 0 0


      Before discussing the measures overlying the Pigdon Limestone reference should be made to the occurrence of some fossil plants in a 4-ft. bed of dark shale, about 13 ft. below the limestone. They were identified by Dr. Crookall as Pecopteris aspera Brongniart, known from the Millstone Grit of South Wales and the Continent.

      Amongst the sediments overlying the limestone, several fossiliferous horizons were noted in the alternating, hard and soft shale between 28½ and 35 fathoms. 46The lowest 5 ft. were in soft shales, particularly rich in Lingula and other small brachiopods. From a collection made here the following were named :—Buxtonia scabricula (Mart.), Lingula squamiformis Phill., Productus (Dictyoclostus) muricatus Phill ., Rhynchonellid, Aviculopecten dissimilis (Flem.), Edmondia expansa (Hind.), Edmondia sulcata (Phill.), Protoschizodus axiniformis (Portl.), Euphemus urei (Flem.), mut. nov., and Loxonema?

      This bed passes upwards into an earthy and much harder shale, 8 to 9 ft. thick, containing crinoid ossicles and shell-debris. Immediately above is a 15-ft. bed of soft black shale, of which the lowest 12 in. yielded a rich and varied assemblage of fossils, including :—crinoidal remains, Serpulites sp., Ambocoelia urei (Flem.), Buxtonia scabricula? (Mart.), Chonetes sp., Lingula squamiformis Phill., Orbiculoidea nitida (Phill.), Productus (Dictyoclostus) muricatus Ph ill., Camarotoechia pleurodon (Phill.), Rhipidomella michelini L'Eveille, Schellwienella cf. rotundata 1. Thomas, Schellwienella sp. (? S. crenistria Phill.), Pterinopecten whitei (Meek), Limatulina?, Myalina verneuilii (M'Coy), Palaeolima cf. retifera Schumard.

      A 3-in. band of hard parroty shale, near the top of this thick shale bed, contained Lingula and fish-remains, and was covered by 3 ft. of fireclay-shales with clay-ironstone nodules. These were followed by a 41-ft. band of shales, with Lingula, Pterinopecten, Myalina? and crinoid ossicles.

      The 6-ft. bed of soft shales at 27½ fathoms was found to be rich in Myalina, Schellwienella crenistria (Phill.), and Pterinopecten, including the Nebraskan form P. whitei (Meek). This assemblage is in close affinity with the lamellibranch fauna of the Coal Measures of Nebraska ; it was noticed many years ago in Scotland but so far as is known this is the first record of such an assemblage in the North of England. A 21-in. coal lies 6 ft. above the Nebraskan bed, and the roof-shales yielded a few shells, including Lingula, Sanguinolites ? and Tellinomorpha. The remaining 60 ft. of strata call for no detailed description ; the 2½ fathoms of 'gritstone' at the top of the bore are coarse pebbly grits, regarded as the base of the overlying Millstone Grit.

      The River Font below Stantonfence.—For several miles below Netherwitton the Font meanders between alluvial flats, flanked by broad gravel terraces. No rock is seen until the head of the gorge below Stantonfence is reached, but from there down to the margin of the map near Coal House—a distance of rather more than a mile—exposures are almost continuous, though the strata are so flat that not much more than 90 ft. are seen.

      The section begins in sandstone, covered by a limestone which forms a broad outcrop in the river, but is indifferently exposed ; 47 about 6 ft. of the lower beds, in 1-ft. courses, are laid bare, but the middle portion is nowhere seen. The upper beds are thin bands of limestone, with many shale partings. The stone is almost entirely composed of crinoidal debris with very little interstitial mud , it has an orchreous weathering, and is fairly rich in Productids. Lithologically similar to the Stanton Limestones (p. 43), the resemblance is confirmed by the tiny greenish patches disseminated throughout, and the rapid alternations of limestone ribs with shale partings in the upper beds.

      The limestone and associated shales yielded :--Aulophyllum fungites (Flem.), crinoid ossicles, Fenestella sp., Chonetes cf. hardrensis Phill., Martinia sp., Productus (Gigantella) latissimus J. Sow., Productus (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., Productus (Dictyoclostus) cf. pugilis Phill., Punctospirifer?, Spirifer bisulcatus J. de Sow., ostracods.

      Latissimoid Productids are fairly common here, as they are in the Stanton Limestone, and indeed the general faunal assemblage is very similar. The strata above the limestone are clearly seen in a cliff on the north bank, and can be examined in the streamlet entering the river opposite the mouth of the Nun Burn. The section here is :—


Ft. In.
Shales - -
Sandstone, very hard 1 3
Shales 0 11
Sandstone, very hard 1 2
Shales, with clay-ironstone bands 4 6
Gap 1 6
Coal, poor, shaly and parroty 1 0
Fireclay 0 9
Sandstone, yellowish and greyish-white 0 10
Ganister 1 0
Shale 0 1
Sandstone, very hard 1 0
Shale 0 6
Sandstone, shaly, hard 0 10
Shales 3 0
Shales, with clay-ironstone bands, Lingula and
small shells
6 0
Gap 3 0
Sandstone, conglomeratic base (THE NUNRIDING
18 0
Shales 30 0
Limestone - -


      Beyond any doubt the Stanton Coal, so much wrought only a mile to the N.N.W., ought to appear somewhere near the base of this section. The most careful examination fails to reveal any trace of it, and the conglomeratic base to the sandstone suggests that a local 'wash-out' may account for the omission. The coal in any case seems an erratic subject, for it is also missing in the Morpeth water-boring (Appendix I, p. 144).

    48  The 1-ft. coal near the top of the foregoing stream-section is, so far as can be seen, of a parroty nature, the bottom 4 in. being a hard parroty shale with coal threads. A better exposure is got near the top of the cliff, about 200 yards to the north, where the section reads :—


    Ft. In.
    Shales with clay-ironstone nodules - -
    Coal 0
  Parroty shale 0
  Coal 0
  Blue shale 0 1
PARROT COAL Strong, parroty shale with coal threads 0
  Coal 0 2
  Band; top half, a parroty shale ; bottom half,
strong, black shale
0 3
  Dark-grey fireclay 0 6
  Coal 1 0
    Fireclay, pale-grey, sandy, rootlets 2 6
    Sandstone, pale-grey, no rootlets 2 0
    Shaly sandstone 12 0
    Shales - -


      For about a mile down the Font the Nunriding Sandstone is well exposed on the south bank ; it is over 30 ft. thick, white and unevenly-bedded, in the river-side quarry 200 yards north of Coal House. The Parrot Coal, here only about 12 ft. above the sandstone, is well exposed at the top of the cliff. A total thickness of 2 ft. 11 in. is made up as follows :—


Ft. In.
Coal 0
Coaly and parroty shale 0
Dark grey shaly fireclay 1 9
Coal 1 3


       The roof-strata are displayed in an adjacent streamlet. Shales with Lingula squamiformis (Phill.), and L. mytiloides, Myalina, crinoid ossicles and a few turreted gastropods were found 17 to 18 ft. above the coal, which has been wrought at several places between Nunriding Hall and Coal House, where marine shales yielded a fair number of fossils, among which were :—Ambocoelia urei (Flem.), Lingula squamiformis Phill., Schellwienella sp., Allorisma sulcata (Flem.), Aviculoj5ecten sp., Leiopteria sp., Nuculana attenuata (Flem.), Aclisina?

      A small fault near Coal House, associated with a thin quartzdolerite dyke, shifts the outcrop of the coal to the south-east. A final rock-exposure at the waterfall (Routing Linn on the six-in. map) near the junction of the Coal Burn at the Font, 130 yards east of Coal House, shows the Nunriding Sandstone 25 ft. thick, with shales below.
Longhorsley.—From Longhorsley to the Coquet the mantle of glacial deposits is so extensive that the only rock exposures known 49 are the grits at Longhorsley and around Hillhead. At the former place the coarse, pebbly grits have been quarried for local needs, and seem to have been used in the old Peel Tower. A gritty rock, seen around Southward Edge, about two miles W.S.W. of Longhorsley, decomposes so readily that it is occasionally dug for fine gravel.

      In Paxton Dene, west of Longhorsley, beds fairly high in the Upper Limestone Group are exposed at intervals in the burn. They are mostly grits and sandstones with interbedded shales, some of them being seen near by in the walls (now largely overgrown) of the Causey Park whinstone dyke quarry.

      A little information as to the very obscure country to the north was obtained by a boring for coal, put down in the summer of 1922, on the east side of the Great North Road at Bockenfield. Rock was encountered under 66 ft. of glacial deposits, and the boring was carried to a depth of 34 fathoms. The strata were alternations of shale, sandstone, sandy shale, and fireclay, with several thin coals. Few of the individual beds were more than 6 ft. thick, and as there was no trace of the gritty, pebbly rock characteristic of the lower part of the Millstone Grit, it was thought that the boring started below that level. This idea was to some extent confirmed by a thin limestone and limy shales with ironstone nodules, at 32 fathoms. The only coal of note was struck at 20½ fathoms : this was in two leaves-9-in. top coal, 7-in. bottom coal, parted by a 3-in. band of fireclay. .The sequence is very similar to that above the Felton St. Mary's Limestone, in the Coquet about a mile to the north ; this would mean that the measures hereabouts are practically flat. Further, it implies that the Felton St. Mary's Limestone, instead of being the equivalent of the limestone in the Mere Burn, north of Acton House, may be the highest limestone of the Upper Limestone Group, and so on the horizon of the Brainshaugh Limestone (see p. 51).

      Turning to the region east of the Wooler road and north of the Coquet valley, there must be a full sequence here, from the Millstone Grit down to the Great Limestone, but the covering of glacial drift is so heavy that rock-sections are confined to the river and its tributary streams. So far as can he seen the dip is in general south-easterly at from 4° to 6°, although around Felton even lower angles prevail.

      Hazon.—There are no good exposures of the beds immediately overlying the Great Limestone, but they have been proved in borings, the earliest of which was continued to 178 fathoms. The Hazon Lee water-bore, in 1933 (see Appendix I, p. 143), went to 96 fathoms (20 fathoms below the Great Limestone), 50 ending just below a 50-ft. bed of coarse, gritty sandstone, the equivalent of the coarse Dunstanburgh Sandstone of North Northumberland. Over the Great Limestone, as usual, are blue shales, here 60 ft. thick, with marine shells (including abundant Chonetes and Spirifer) scattered throughout ; there are two thin limestones in the upper beds. Then come about 50 ft. of grey sandstone (apparently the same as that quarried near Chesterhill) with a 1 ft. 2 in. coal on top. This is the seam known in the country to the south as the Chirm or Little Limestone Coal, the Little Limestone being here represented by the Cushat Limestone, 4 ft. thick, 4 fathoms above the coal. The intervening shales contain limestone nodules, and the lower 6 ft. are highly fossiliferous. Immediately on top of the coal is a layer of Carbonicola-like shells (associated with Lingula), which have been doubtfully referred by Dr. Pringle to Edmondia; their superficial resemblance to Carbonicola is very close. Above are highly crinoidal bands, while ten to thirteen fathoms higher two other fossiliferous shale beds were noted. The lower, with impure limestone ribs, contained crinoid ossicles, Schellwienella
cf. crenistria, Schizophoriaresupinata (Mart.), Streblopteria ornata (R. Eth. junr.) and fragments of Productus ; the upper yielded crinoid ossicles, brachiopods, large crushed lamellibranchs, and gastropods, and was associated with a 1-ft. band of grey limestone, with a few crinoid ossicles and many gastropods. Seven fathoms above this thin limestone, and about 27 fathoms from the surface, shales yielded abundant Camarotoechia cf. pleurodon (Phill.), Lingula, a few Fenestellids and a fragment of Conularia : the Hazon Coal position is about 9 to 10 fathoms above. The coal was not noted in this bore, but 3 in. of it had been proved in an earlier boring (June, 1933), while the bottom was seen in the adjacent burn, during the re-survey. The remains of old workings were observed here and there in the west bank, and in borings between Hazon Lee and Guyzance Lee the coal is said to have been 2 ft. 2 in. thick, at 16 fathoms. The borer stated that here the coal was covered by 7 ft. of shale, capped by a soft band which coloured the rods yellow ; this was doubtless the yellow and brown sandstone, 45 ft. thick, near the top of the Hazon Lee boring. Casts of marine shells were observed in the core in a thin layer towards the base of this mass of sandstone, which forms a gorge in the burn hard by and rests on 12 ft. of blue shales. Overlying beds are exposed in the stream (Newton Burn) to the south of Hazon. These mostly consist of sandstone, sometimes coarse, and subordinate shales, with at least one thin coal, dipping 4° to 6° south-east. Good exposures of somewhat higher measures occur in the cliffs at the sharp bend of the burn 600 yards W.N.W. of Brainshaugh, where a recent slip (1934) has uncovered a 4-ft. ochreous-weathering, limestone grit. This curious bed, perhaps marking an unconformity, is an aggregate of large quartz-grains in a calcareous matrix. It contains some crinoids and a few 'horn-corals.'


Comparative Vertical Sections of the Upper Linestone Group 

Fig-2  Comparative Vertical Sections of the Upper Limestone Group


   52   Laterally it seems to pass into a finer-grained limy grit, with coaly streaks and a few indeterminable lamellibranchs. The complete section here is :—


Ft. In.
Coarse sandstone, gritty and pebbly        at least- 30 0
Dark-grey shales 12 to 15 0
Gap, with some sandstone bands 3 0
Shales, pale-grey, clayey 1 6
Greyish sandstone 1 3
Grit, fine-grained, mottled greenish and brownish 0 3
Greenish-grey shale parting - -
'Limestone-grit' or conglomerate, greyish, coralline 4 3
Sandstone, greenish-grey, micaceous 0 6
Gap                                        about - 1 0
Sandstone, greyish-brown, bedded 12 0


      These beds cannot lie very far below the highest limestone of the Upper Limestone Group, seen to advantage in the west bank of the burn west of Brainshaugh, where the section is :—


    Ft. In.
Shales, limy, base crinoidal - -

  Limestone 0 7 to 10
Shales, limy 0 6
Limestone, hard, dark-grey, crinoidal 1 to 2 0
    Shales, limy, crinoidal 1 8
    Coal, good, hard 0 7
    Fireclay, with plant-remains 0 6


       Lower downstream the limestone crosses the burn, dipping 5° a few degrees south of east ; overlying shales floor the course of the burn for a short distance, and the upper portions were at one time seen in the Coquet hard by, during repairs to the weir. The pool on being pumped dry revealed :—


Ft. In.
Gritty and pebbly sandstone, with many thin
lenticles of coal near the base
6 0
Sandstone 2 0
Clay-ironstone band 0 5
Shales, grey to dark-grey, with clay-ironstone
10 0


       North-eastwards, towards Guyzance, there are some good exposures of the shales above the Brainshaugh Limestone, especially in the River Coquet and a neighbouring rivulet. These beds are highly fossiliferous, and yielded the following forms :—Zaphrentis sp., crinoids, Fenestella sp., Lingula, Productus (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., Pustula sp., Spirifer bisulcatus J. de C. Sow., Spiriferina insculpta (Phill.), Aviculopecten sp., A. dissimilis ? (Flem.), Grammatodon obtusus Phill., Palaeolima sp., cf. Posidonomya corrugata R. Eth. junr., Sanguinolites sp. and small gastropods. 53 Overlying sandstone has been wrought on the roadside at Guyzance, where the quarry shows :—


Ft. In.
Sandy shales with thin sandstone bands - -
Shales -
Coal 0 6
Fireclay 0 10
Sandstone 2 0
Shales 0 6
Sandstone, thick-bedded, white with brown specks 20 6


A sandstone seen on the south bank of the Coquet, 400 yards to the south, is probably about the same horizon ; here the section was :—



Ft. In.
Coal 1 0
Sandy shales 6 to 8 0
Coal 0 6
Fireclay 0 10
Shales with thin sandstone bands 8 0
Sandstone 20 0



      The junction between the Upper Limestone Group and the overlying Millstone Grit has been drawn at the base of the massive pebbly grits which form the banks of the river at Barnhill House, Guyzance.

      Mere Burn.—This stream enters the River Coquet about mile east of Acton House. Rock is exposed continuously along its banks for the first half mile above its junction with the Coquet, and intermittently for another half mile upstream. These strata belong to the highest beds of the Upper Limestone Group, and include two crinoidal limestones, one seen in the stream north of Acton House, and a higher one farther downstream.

      About 600 yards south-west of Guyzance Lee, traces of old pits were at one time seen on the side of the burn. These were probably to the Hazon Coal, but nothing is seen in situ until we get a mile farther downstream. Here is a fossiliferous sandstone underneath a limestone, at least 3½ ft. thick ; it may be considerably more, enough to provide substantial fissures, for it was noted that, where the outcrop crosses the stream, more water flows into the pool than out of it. The limestone is rather ochreous, crinoidal and is rich in Productus (Gigantella) latissimus, together with ? Cleiothyridina (L' Eveille), ? Composita ambigua (j. Sow.), Productus sp. [of P. maximus type], and Pustula punctata. Sandstone a short distance above yielded ? Schellwienella sp., and a nautiloid.

      Shales and sandstones are exposed at intervals downstream, and the coarse pebbly sandstone already noted in the burn northwest of Brainshaugh (see p. 52) forms a broad outcrop, but the underlying gritty limestone is not exposed. There is, however, a good exposure of the higher limestone farther on : this is 3 ft. thick 54and rests on 3 ft. of limy shales, with 7½ in. of good coal below, on light-grey fireclay. There can be no doubt that this limestone is the same as that seen at Brainshaugh, no more than 230 yards to the north-east, for the two are alike both as to lithology and associated strata. In addition to crinoid ossicles, other fossils in the limestone were Serpulites ?, Productus (Gigantella) latissimus J. Sow., Schizophoria resupinata (Mart.), cf. Spirifera grandicostus M'Coy, Grammatodon obtusus, Euomphalus sp.

    Shales overlie the limestone, as at Brainshaugh. In the Mere Burn these shales must be at least 60 ft. thick ; the upper portions of the lower 30 ft. are highly fossiliferous, and contain crinoid stems, Fenestella sp., ? Rhombopora, Chonetes polita M'Coy, Pustula aculeata (Mart.), Productus (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinits J. Sow., ? Schizophoria, Spirifer semicircularis Phill. The top 30 ft. of this thick shale is rich in small clay-ironstone concretions and is covered by 9 ft. of sandstone, the upper half of which is gritty.

     In the lower reaches of the Mere Burn down to its junction with the Coquet are alternations of shales and sandy shales, with occasional fireclays and a few thin coals—about 60 ft. in all.

     Swarland, Lowframlington, Felton.—South-west of the Mere Burn there is much glacial drift, so that no rock is exposed until the Swarland district is reached. A boring in this little known tract, 400 yards W.N.W. of Swarland Hall, went to 63 ft. Under 10 ft. of soil and clay came 50½ ft. of sandstone (the upper 40 ft. a white freestone, and remainder yellow freestone) resting on a 2½-ft. bed of dark marl-stone.

    In the middle reaches of the Swarland Burn sandstones are seen associated with shales, fireclays and thin coals. At Long Row the section is :—


Ft. In.
Shales 0 8
Clay-ironstone band with shells 0 2½
Shales 0 9
Clay-ironstone band, sandy and slightly fossiliferous 0 4
Shales, dark-grey 1 10
Sandstone, brownish 2 6
Shales, dark-grey 4 0



       From the 2½-in. ironstone band near the top there were collected Camarotoechia pleurodon (Phill.), Productus sp., Aviculopecten spp., Edmondia sulcata (Flem.), Protoschizodus cf. axiniformis (Portl.), Nucula and Euphemus urei (Flem.)

      Lower down, the river cuts a gorge through thick sandstones, associated with thin shales and fireclays with two thin coals. The dip is low, 3° to 5° to S.S.E. and the sandstone at the Mill is coarse. At the south-east end of Swarland village a boring, made 55 between 1914-18, is said to have found a coal at 19 fathoms 5 ft., the section being top coal 1ft. 6in. ; band 9 in. ; coal 1 ft. Whether this was correct or not a shaft, now waterlogged, was sunk alongside to 17 fathoms, and then abandoned owing to trouble with the pumping. This seam would be about the position of the Hazon Coal. The strata in the burn near the Mill are certainly above the position of the Cushat Limestone, and may belong to the group of sandstones and thin coals, associated with fossiliferous bands, that were got in the Hazon Lee water-bore midway between the Cushat Limestone and the Hazon Coal. Higher strata appear as isolated exposures of sandstone and shales on the roadside north of Swarland, and again in a whin-dyke quarry hard by. In addition, a boring near East House proved 28 fathoms of strata, mostly sandstone, with a 9-in. coal.

      Near Lowframlington, 2 miles to the south-west, a small tributary to the Coquet cuts through laminated and flaggy sandstones, covered by shales, sandy shales and fireclays, with a 17-in. coal of poor quality. These beds are doubtless about the position of those in Swarland Burn, near the Mill. Disturbed strata are seen a mile to the east, in the banks of the Coquet, at a small anticlinal fold, whose axis appears to run W.S.W.—E.N.E. Faulting may accompany the folding, as about 400 yds. N.N.E. of Catheugh the dip is almost due south at high angles (50° to 60°), and again 50° in a tributary 330 yards to the W.S.W. Close to Catheugh the dip changes to N. at 12°, whilst at the sharp bend of the river the dip is almost south-east, between 10° and 30°. The usual alternations of sandstones, shales, sandy shales and fireclays are seen, with some very thin coals. The only noteworthy feature is a ganister at least 2 ft. thick, which was found to have a fairly high melting point and in other respects proved a good-quality refractory.

      Beyond the Catheugh sections no rock is exposed along the Coquet until we reach Shothaugh. Here the river enters a gorge about 1½ miles long, with good rock-exposures on either bank. For the most part the river runs along the strike of the beds, so that from Shothaugh to the bridge at Felton the total thickness is probably under 200 ft. The lower measures contain two limestones, the Shothaugh and the Felton St. Mary's, separated by a thick sandstone; the upper beds are in shales and sandstones with several thin coals.

      The Shothaugh Limestone, at the head of the gorge, is exposed at several places on either side of the river ; it is a greyish stone, rather impure, shaly and crinoidal, and weathering yellow. No more than 3 ft. can he seen at any place, but this probably does not represent the complete thickness. Apart from crinoid debris the only fossils noted were crushed 'horn-corals' and a few indeterminable brachiopods and lamellibranchs. Underneath are  several feet of light-grey sandy fireclay, and above are blue-grey shales passing up into sandy shales. A thick sandstone succeeds  56 these measures, and a quarry high up the left bank shows 25 ft. of massive and false-bedded rock. For more than half a mile below Shothaugh there is a gently undulating outcrop of this sandstone, with occasional intercalations of sandy shales. Above it comes the Felton St. Mary's Limestone, forming a broad outcrop in the river. On the south bank the limestone rests on about 5 ft. of blue shales, and these on a good hard coal, apparently quite 2 ft. thick. The limestone is best seen on the north bank, where it is 5 to 7 ft. thick, a greyish, bedded crinoidal stone with ochreous weathering, and crowded with Productus (Gigantella) latissimus . and other fossils. A representative list is :—Coral indet., Chonetes cf. buchiana de Kon., C. polita M'Coy, Composita ambigua (J. Sow.), Productus (Productus) cf. antiquatus J. Sow., P. (Gigantella) latissimus, P. (Eomarginifera) cf. longispinus J. Sow., ? Rhipidomella michelini L'Eveille, Spirifer cf. integricosta Phill ., S. cf. bisulcatus J. de C. Sow., a nautiloid and Orthoceras sp.

      Over the limestone on the north bank are about 6 ft. of blue crinoidal shales. These are the bottom members of a 20-ft. shale bed seen to better advantage on the south bank, where they contain many ironstone nodules. Overlying beds, 75 ft. thick, consist of alternations of sandstones, shaly sandstones, and fireclays with some thin coals. The thickest coal is seen at the Weir and opposite the Mill, where it is about 18 in. thick (coal 8 to 9 in., parrot coal 10 in.). towards the bridge at Felton are coarse, gritty sandstones with thin coals and coal lenticles.

      There is some doubt as to the correct position of the Felton St. Mary's Limestone in the general sequence. The absence in the Coquet not only of a shale bed comparable in thickness with that above the Brainshaugh Limestone, but also of the 30-ft. gritty and pebbly sandstone below it, seemed to favour the placing of the Felton St. Mary's Limestone below the Brainshaugh. On the other hand the numerous thin coals above both limestones, and the proximity to each of overlying gritty sandstone, suggest identity. In that case the normal crinoidal Shothaugh Limestone of the Coquet section and the thick overlying sandstone would be represented, respectively, by the gritty limestone and overlying coarse pebbly sandstone of the Newton Burn section, 600 yards N.N.W. of Brainshaugh (p. 50).



       CONSIDERED as an assemblage of predominantly coarse-grained sediments between the Limestone Group and the Coal Measures, the Millstone Grit of one-inch Sheet 9 is strongly developed, perhaps more so than in any other part of the North- Eastern Coalfield. But difficulties are soon encountered when boundaries have to be mapped.
The base of the Series is taken at the bottom of the first grits encountered above the highest marine strata of the Upper Limestone Group, a line not easy to draw on account of the paucity of exposures near the junction of the two divisions. The top is even more difficult to define owing to the persistence of grit conditions up into the overlying Coal Measures—here quite changed in character from their typical Durham facies. were this an isolated area, without palaeobotanical evidence, the natural boundary would without doubt be drawn at the Brockwell Coal, immediately beneath which coarse, pebbly grits appear. It will thus be borne in mind that throughout this map the upper limit of the Millstone Grit is a purely arbitrary line more or less parallel to the Brockwell Coal outcrop (the base of the Productive or Middle Coal Group).

      Long years ago two deep borings ('Broomhill' and 'Druridge Bay') were put down which must have gone through the whole, or practically the whole, of the Series. They both gave cores, but unfortunately no geologist seems to have examined the Druridge bore, and though many of the Broomhill cores were still available for inspection when the re-survey was made, nearly all the limestones and 'shell-beds ' seemed to have been taken away. The readings therefore cannot be so accurate as we would wish.

      The Broomhill bore (see Appendix I, p. 150), put down in the little-known country north of the Hauxley Fault, seems to have started just below the Brockwell Coal position. Massive pebbly grits predominate down to 104 fathoms, below which are fine grained strata with thin limestone courses and 'shell-beds' , presumably belonging to the Upper Limestone Group. The Druridge Bay bore (not detailed here), starting well within the Productive Coal Measures, reached the Brockwell Coal at 116 fathoms, and massive sandstones, in all about 480 feet thick, began at 140 fathoms in the first shale below them was a band of 'shells and fish-remains,' 58 quite possibly the highest member of the Upper Limestone Group.

      These two bores, therefore, warrant us in assuming a general thickness of between 500 and 600 feet for the Millstone Grit assemblage in this part of the country.

      Surface exposures also show that massive sandstones and grits predominate, with intercalated bands of shale and fireclay and a few thin coals. Coarse felspathic grits, with quartz pebbles up to inch across, are especially characteristic of the formation. The few coals are too erratic and soft to be of much value. Several are seen outcropping in the River Coquet around Morwick, and there are records of a coal said to be over 3 ft. thick in the neighbourhood of Eshottheugh. Again, at Earsdon Hill there is a small open shaft to a coal which has been wrought intermittently. Several coals were cut in the Broomhill bore, but at Druridge, in the 600 feet of beds below the Brockwell, only one, a 20-in. seam (top coal 12 in., band 3 in., coal 10 in.), was found. Assuming the record to be sound, this suggests that coals present near the outcrop have no great easterly extension.

     These Millstone Grit strata have little or no effect on the topography of this region save at Helm, where coarse pebbly grits form a prominent ridge with a steep scarp facing north-west. Away from the Coquet gorges round Morwick exposures are so few and scattered that anything like a detailed knowledge is impossible.

    Area north of the Causey Park Dyke.—Rock-exposures are mostly confined to the Coquet, in the Guyzance-Morwick region. High cliffs of coarse, pebbly grits form the left bank of the river. adjoining Guyzance ; as these lie at no great distance above the highly marine shales 200 yards upstream, they may be considered as the lowest Millstone Grit beds of this area. The measures are almost flat, or dip very gently eastwards. Just below the railway-bridge east of Morwick there is a large quarry in sandstone, which is said to have provided much of the stone for the bridge. At the Mill a 13-in, coal, hard, shaly and rather parroty, is seen resting on 3 ft. of hard, grey fireclay and covered by 10 in. of black shale ; over all comes 30 ft. of sandstone and grit. At the time of Topley's original survey a higher coal was seen downstream, where the section was :—


Ft. In.
Grit 20 0
Coal 1 6
Clay and sandy shales 5 10
Grit 40 0



     The highest of these grits has been wrought near by, and 20 ft. of rock, under 10 ft. of gravel, can still be seen in the old quarry. The dip hereabouts is at low angles in a general south-easterly direction.

      There are good cliff-sections east of Brotherwick, 59 and shale bands are particularly noteworthy on the east bank mile west by south from Howlet Hall. A typical section here gives :-


Ft. In.
Sandstone flags and sandy shale 50 0
Sandy shale 8 0
Coal 0 4
Fireclay 1 0
Sandstone - -


       The sandstone under this shows some coarse pebbly bands, and on the opposite side of the river similar beds are seen, with much fireclay, shale and thin bands of an inferior quality ganister high up the bank. Traces of coal workings can be seen on the right bank of the river north of Howlet Hall, just beyond the edge of the map. In a gully over the river at the sharp bend S.E. of Warkworth Castle, a 14-in. coal is seen under soft coarse sandstone.

      Away from the river all rock is concealed by superficial clay or sand and gravel deposits until the Eshott district is reached. Here, in Longdike Burn, felspathic grits are associated with sandstone and shales. A 1-ft. band of grey crinoidal limestone can be seen in the south bank, but unlike the surrounding measures (which are rather flat) the bed has a high angle of dip, 45° to the S.E., and may perhaps be an erratic. Borings close to Eshottheugh are reported to have proved a coal, 3 ft. 7 in. thick, at a depth of 33 fathoms, and about 700 yards south-west of the farm a shaft is said to have been sunk to 63 fathoms. If the coal, supposed to have been reached, was the 3 ft. 7 in. seam, there must be a fault, down west, between the shaft and the bores which lie a little to the east. There are also traces of old pits around Bockenfield, but to the south, on the way to Helm, borings failed to find any coal, although one, about ½ mile N.N.W. of Helm, went to 42 fathoms. At this hamlet coarse grit makes a prominent ridge, along which there are several quarries ; as much as 20 ft. of coarse, felspathic grit can still be seen, and beneath this there is said to be a thin coal.

      Area south of the Causey Park Dyke.—From the Causey Park intrusion southwards to the edge of the Sheet exposures are few and far between, the first being of coarse sandstone around Earsdon Hill. A boring near the farm is said to have proved 30 feet of freestone, while the well was said to have been sunk through 13 ft. of clay and 27 ft. of freestone, and bored further through 4 feet of sandstone overlying 'blue metal.' Hard by there is a small shaft, 45 ft. deep, to a 15-in, coal, wrought intermittently. The section is :—


Ft. In.
Coarse sandstone 30 0
Dark-grey shale, sparingly micaceous 13 0
Coal 1 3
Fireclay,          at least 1 0


     60  West of Earsdon there is an exposure showing, under 3 ft. of reddish boulder-clay, 10 to 12 ft. of thin-bedded, reddish and greyish sandstone, slightly micaceous and coarse, with small pebbles.

      Half a mile south-west of Cockle Park a light-greyish sandstone has been quarried. Several feet can still be seen under 10 ft. of stiff blue boulder-clay ; the dip is 2° to 3° S.E., and the stone has evidently been quarried for the wall surrounding the reservoir, less than half a mile to the south.

      Rather more than half a mile south of Espley Hall 12 ft. of grit are seen in a quarry west of the main road ; the top 4 ft. are thin-bedded and shaly, the lower beds more massive and occasionally wedge-bedded. An adjoining quarry, 400 yards to the south-west, shows 12 ft. of grit, the upper half being thin-bedded and the lower coarser and more pebbly. A coal is said to underlie the grit, and there are traces of old pits in the vicinity. These strata, inclined gently W. by S., are at or very near the base of the Grit series, and may well be the same as those got at the top of the recent Morpeth water-boring on the Cotting Burn, 1¼ miles to the south-west (Appendix I, p. 144). The intervening ground is mapped as a dip-slope, although it is possible that a westerly deviation of the Pegswood Moor Fault may account for the shallowness of the Grit in the bore. The Millstone Grit may be thinner than usual hereabouts, as the Victoria Coal (at no distance above the top of the Group) outcrops in the How Burn less than a mile east of the bore. But there may be a slight increase of dip east of the boring ; an angle of 6° (the dip of the Brockwell Coal in the West Cottingwood Colliery alongside the How Burn, north of the Asylum), would make the Grit about 450 feet thick.



       THE Coal Measures along the coastal belt mark, of course, the northernmost extension of the Newcastle Coalfield. As compared with County Durham, the regional change is most marked, the coking and gas coals of that county having altered their character entirely. Steam and bunker coals here predominate and are in much demand abroad, so that the export trade is very considerable. A certain amount of house coal is also produced, that from the Yard seam being of particularly good quality.

      As active mining is in progress everywhere, our knowledge is far more complete now than when the first geological maps were published 50 years ago. At that time little was known about large areas in the centre of the field, and it had not been found possible to link up the northern and southern extremities. These defects have now been remedied, and a threefold division into Upper, Middle and Lower Groups, (with practically all the workable coals in the Middle Group), has been found desirable.

      Structurally, the general dip is seawards, but there is much subsidiary folding, especially in the north, round Broomhill. A syncline, appearing on the coast at Cresswell, may be looked upon as a relic of the great fold that is so prominent along the seaboard farther south.

     Normal faulting abounds, but does not call for extended comment. The dominant directions are E.N.E. (as exemplified in the 'Stakeford Dyke' to the south, in one-inch Sheet 10, and the Hauxley Fault in the north) and E.S.E. (e.g. the Pegswood Moor and Hagg House Faults). These two main directions coincide with those followed by the dyke intrusions of the North-Eastern Coalfield (E.S.E. for the Tertiary dykes, E. or E.N.E. for the late-Carboniferous) and may therefore differ widely in age, though as yet no definite record is known from this area of an E.S.E. fault displacing one running E.N.E.

The total thickness of Coal Measures amounts to about 1,500 feet. The following threefold division has been
 adopted :-

(a) UPPER GROUP, mostly sandstones, sometimes reddish-stained, (Woodhorn) ; coals few and unimportant.

(b) MIDDLE GROUP, about 850 ft., containing all the coals at present worked (High Main to Brockwell).

(c) LOWER GROUP, mostly sandstones, often coarse ; coals few and of little value.

     62 Little is known of the Lower Group, which is by no means so well developed as the equivalent Ganister Measures of County Durham. Millstone Grit conditions appear to have persisted to the end, coarse grits being found immediately below the Brockwell Coal.

      The boundaries of the Middle or Productive division are well marked by the Brockwell and High Main Coals, both traceable with little difficulty throughout the area. Coals in the upper half of the group are best developed at Broomhill, Ashington and Woodhorn, those in the lower half around Pegswood and Widdrington.

    In the Upper Group coals are of little importance, although they have been worked by means of shallow shafts at several localities. Massive sandstones predominate, the most important being that at Woodliorn, so extensively quarried for grindstones.

      The following condensed general section may be taken as representative of the Coal Measures over the greater part of this region, but excluding the Broomhill area :-


Coal Measures
  Fms. Ft. In
Measures with massive sandstones and shales, including the High Main ' mussel-bed,' and a few coals 80 0 0
Measures 15 0 0
Measures 15 0 0
Measures, mostly sandstone 15 0 0
Measures 9 0 0
Measures with 'mussel-bands' 6 0 0
Low MAIN COAL - 5 6
Measures with 'mussel-bands' 10 0 0
Measures with thin coals 22 0 0
Measures 8 0 0
Measures 7 0 0
Measures 5 0 0
Measures with thin coals 20 0 0
Measures 10 0 0
Measures... ... ... ... perhaps 8 0 0

Fig 3

Comparative Vertical Sections of the Coal Measures Amble Ashington

Fig 3 — Comparative Vertical Sections of the Coal Measures


     64 In the following detailed accounts, districts are taken in order, starting in the south and working northwards. In each district the measures are described from the bottom upwards.

      Cottingwood Common. This small area, on the north-eastern outskirts of Morpeth, lies to the south of the Pegswood Moor Fault. More than 350 feet of measures outcrop in this district ;  they belong to the lowest beds, and contain six workable seams. The following is the sequence :—


  Fms. Ft. In
Strata, mostly sandstones with some thin coals 15 0 0
Strata, mostly sandstone 6 3 0
Sandstone and fireclay 1 1 9
Sandstone with shale and a thin coal 12 0 0
Sandstone 11 0 0
Sandstone, coarse 12 0 0
Sandstone 18 0 0


      The Brockwell and Victoria Coals have been wrought from shafts on the west side of the How Burn, west and south-west of Pegswood Moor. The higher seams are exposed in the lower reaches of the burn and most have been mined by day-drifts along the east bank. The general dip is 4° to 6° N.E.

     Small areas of the Victoria Coal were wrought at the two old Cottingwood pits, 10 fathoms and 5½ fathoms respectively. Lower downstream the seam was 28 fathoms deep at the West Cottingwood Colliery, 500 yards north-east of the Asylum. The coal here was 1 ft. 9 in. thick, but apparently not a great deal of mining has been done. The seam has been proved in borings south of the Asylum, and is reported to have been a very good house and steam coal, and a fair gas coal. The sandstone separating it from the Brockwell is usually about 60 ft. thick, and is said to be coarse and pebbly .

      The Brockwell was wrought to its  outcrop north-west of the West Cottingwood pits, where it was 2 ft. thick at 19 fathoms. To a much less extent it was got at the old Howburn Colliery, just above the junction of the How Burn and the River Wansbeck, where it was 2 ft. 4 in. thick at 22 fathoms. There were larger workings at the disused Morpeth Moor pit, on the roadside 600 yards south-east of Pegswood Moor. This went through the whole local sequence down to the Victoria Coal at 62 fathoms. About 18 fathoms of strata below the Victoria were bored in 'stone' (probably sandstone) 'with coal-pipings.' The Brockwell, which formed the main workings, was wrought almost from the southern margin of the map as far as Pegswood Moor, where a 'trouble' was encountered. Here a coal, brought almost opposite the Brockwell, was as much as 3 ft. 10 in. thick in some places, and doubtless on this account was considered to be the Low Main. This would give the Pegswood Moor Fault a throw of 85 fathoms. As, however, the Low Main is known to outcrop a short distance to the east, it would be necessary to invoke a second disturbance (a strike-fault with downthrow to the west) to account for the Low Main opposite the Brockwell. 65 It is much more likely to be the seam near the top of the Morpeth Moor shaft, i.e. the Harvey of Pegswood, possibly somewhat thicker towards its outcrop, as happens sometimes with other seams. This would give the fault a throw of about 30 fathoms.

      The Brockwell of this area has the reputation of being a good house coal ; it leaves a brown ash but sparks in the fire. This is the only district within the area of the memoir where the coal has been mined, but it can be traced with confidence in borings throughout Sheets 9 and 10, where it is taken as the base of the Middle or Productive Coal, Group.

      In the Morpeth Moor pit the Bandy Coal, 3 ft. thick, was next in importance to the Brockwell, and was reported to be an excellent locomotive coal. In the old Howburn shaft it was 2 ft. 9 in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. ; black metal band, 3 in. ; bottom coal, 1 ft. 6 in.), 10½ fathoms from the surface. The seam was cut in the West Cottingwood shafts only a few feet below the surface deposits, and outcrops near by in the How Burn at the junction with the brook ('McBride's Burn') flowing down from Pegswood Moor farm.

      Two hundred yards below the mouth of McBride's Burn there is a thin coal 20 ft. above the Bandy. Though only 15 in. thick, with a 5-in, band 5 inches from the top, this bed (known locally as the Little Wonder ) was mined hereabouts and has the reputation of being a good steam coal. It was passed through at 6½ fathoms in the Howburn shaft, where the section was : top coal, 3 in., seggar, 4 in., coal 10 in.

      The Old Man (or Splint) and Little Coals, 10 to 12 fathoms above the Bandy, have been tried at Morpeth Moor Colliery, where they are only separated by 7 ft. of strata. During the re-survey their outcrops were well seen at the foot of the How Burn, where the section was :—


    Ft. In.
    Shales with ironstone nodules 3 1
    Coal 0 1
OLD MAN COAL   Fireclay 0 6
    Coal 2 9
    Gap with shaly fireclay and a 6-in. coal 7 0
    LITTLE COAL (with a 3-in. band) 1 10½
    Black shale 1 2
    Black shaly fireclay 1 2
    Fireclay, greyish with rootlets 1 2
    Fireclay, greyish and sandy 3 0

       The roof shales of the Old Man Coal, at an exposure higher up the burn, yielded the following plants :—Alethopteris lonchitica (Schloth.), Mariopteris cf. muricata (Schloth.), Mariopteris obliqua Brongn., Annularia radiata Brongn., Calamites undulatus Sternb., Lepidostrobus sp.

   66 In the section at the mouth of the How Burn the Harvey Coal of Pegswood is seen at the top of the cliff. Here the coal is 2 ft. 9 in. thick, and rests on 1 ft. 6 in. of grey, rooty fireclay. Below that there are 4 ft. of white, fine-grained sandstone, resting on 1 ft. of shales and a 3½-in. coal. Lying as it does at the top of the steep cliff, the Harvey is not very accessible, and does not appear to have been wrought anywhere near its outcrop. It was cut at 18 fathoms in the Morpeth Moor pit, where it was 2 ft. 11 in. thick, but the only local workings are, as already noted (p. 64), on the north side of the Pegswood Moor Fault, opposite the Brock-well. It is, however, being actively mined at Pegswood Colliery to the east.

      Pegswood.—Coals wrought in this area extend from the Bensham to the Harvey, a thickness of about 400 feet. Lower coals have been proved in borings, and some of these may be opened up in the near future. Amongst them is the Brockwell, about 2 ft. thick and of good quality, lying about 33 fathoms below the Harvey. The Old Man and Little Coals of the Morpeth Moor and How Burn district have also been proved, although here known as the Top and Bottom Busty

      The Harvey Coal of Pegswood, 2 ft. 10 in. thick, is 76 fathoms deep at Pegswood Colliery, where it has been extensively wrought in recent years, mostly northwards and eastwards to the royalty boundary at the railway. Between Fawdon House and Longhirst Hall the Pegswood workings were stopped by a fault, beyond which borings, proving the Old Man, Little and Brockwell Coals, showed that the disturbance had a downthrow to the south of about 66 feet.

      South of the Pegswood shaft a 'wash-out' in the seam has been found in several places. It is not possible to say how broad the 'wash-out' area may be, as there are no borings anywhere in the region. The northern edge, proved at several points, seems to have a general east-west trend, but probably takes on a more southerly course before reaching the Morpeth Moor pits ; alternatively the 'wash-out' disappears westwards. The coal is at present being mined westwards towards Pegswood Moor. Plants collected from the roof were :—Lepidodendron obovatum Sternberg, Lepidodendron sp., Lepidophloios acerosus (L. & H.), Sigillaria sp. and Urnatopteris tenella Brongn.

      The seam (Band Coal of Pegswood) about 10 fathoms above the Harvey has not yet received any attention, as it does not appear to be of very good quality and the band in one place is as much as 1½ ft. thick.

      67 Little working has been done in the. Beaumont Coal, 2 ft. 5 in. thick ; it is very erratic and dwindles to 1 ft. 3 in. Above it are two coals, 2 ft. 2 in. and 2 ft. 6 in. respectively, which seem to be thicker here than in other districts of the Sheet, where they are rarely more than a few inches. This unusual thickness seems to be confined to the region of the shafts; elsewhere at Pegswood the normal thickness is 18 inches.

     The Plessey Coal, much wrought nowadays at Pegswood, is a hard, somewhat splinty seam, rather high in ash, but has the great advantage that it does not clinker ; a blend with 40 per cent. Harvey is much used for locomotives. Traces of old pits near the outcrop can be seen in the fields a short distance east of Pegswood Moor. At the present colliery the seam, 2 ft. 10 in. thick, lies at a depth of 36½ fathoms from the surface. The overlying shale contains estuarine lamellibranchs, and this Plessey 'shell-bed' is easily the most persistent of the whole Coal Measure area. From the Pegswood region the following fossils were collected :—Anthracomya aff. modiolaris (J. de C. Sow.), Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), Naiadites cf. quadrata (J. de C. Sow.), N. aff. producta (Brown), Spirorbis pusillus (Mart.) (see also p. 69).

      The interval, 14 to 16 fathoms, between the Plessey and the Low Main at Pegswood is rather greater than usual. The Low Main, being a first-class coal, and usually about 4 ft. thick, early attracted attention, and consequently has been almost wrought out. Before the present working pit was sunk it had been mined to the west. In that direction lay the outcrop, which has been traced as far as the 11-fathom fault which probably stopped the workings in the old shafts near Fawdon House. As in the Ashington district, the 'metal' above the coal is a more or less shaly fireclay or
'ramble,' which is removed and used in the manufacture of bricks.

      The Five-Quarter Coal appears to be in two portions in the Pegswood shaft, the upper leaf (2 ft. 7 in.) being 4 fathoms above the lower coal (14 in.). Towards the railway to the north-east, however, these two portions must unite, for as worked from the Ashington side the coal makes a single seam, albeit with several thin bands. There may be a similar conjunction west of the present pits, for in that direction the seam was worked in some of the old pits from 4½ to 5 ft. thick ; since it had a 4-in. to 6-in. band hereabouts the seam used to be called the Band Coal.

      The Bensham is too near the surface in the Pegswood shaft to be a workable proposition. It was here 2 ft. 4 in. thick, under 10 fathoms of sandstone. In old pits near the outcrop it was known as the 'Quarry Coal,' probably because it lay beneath the thick sandstone quarried at several places in the vicinity. The sandstone can be seen, 25 ft. thick, at Fawdon House, and again 300 yards to the south, where there is a capping of 8 ft. of sandy clay on 20 ft. of greyish and greenish-brown, highly micaceous sandstone. The dip here is E. by N. at 4°. The stone is also seen once more in Pegswood village, and in the railway-cutting at the station. The upper beds are seen in the burn immediately west 68 of Bothal Park, where the rock is greyish, coarse and highly false-bedded. A bore alongside the burn is said to have passed through 80 ft. of sandstone before reaching the Bensham, the latter with the
unusual thickness of 3 ft. 10 in.

      Overlying the sandstone is the valuable Yard Coal, which has been mined so extensively in more eastern localities. Here it is close to the limit of the royalty, but has been tried west of Whitefield by means of drifts from the lower coals.

      North of the Pegswood shafts the measures have a general northerly dip at low angles. Farther east the direction is easterly, resuming the more usual south-easterly trend around Bothal.

      Ashington, Woodhorn and Newbiggin.—This is the leading producer among the Coal Measure districts, the Ashington Coal Company owning pits at Ashington, Linton, Ellington and Woodhorn, besides the new shafts at Lynemouth. The total output of this single company averages 12,000 tons per working day and 3,000,000 tons per year.

      In the Ashington-Woodhorn area coals from the Plessey to the High Main have been wrought ; below the Plessey no seams have so far been mined, although they have been proved in a boring below the Low Main in the Ashington Carl shaft. That boring went over 70 fathoms from the Plessey down to the 25-in. Brockwell seam. In that distance the thickest individual coal was the Beaumont, 2 ft. 2 in., though about 8 fathoms below this were alternations of coal and shale as follows :


Ft. In.
Dark metal
Coal and metal
Dark metal


       This is the representative of the Widdrington Yard, much worked in its home districts, as also at Choppington, where it is known as the Top Busty. At Pegswood, however, the coal has not received any attention, a band making working unprofitable. Midway between the Brockwell and the Beaumont there were two other coals 3½ fathoms apart.
 These might quite possibly represent the Old Man and Little Coals of the Cottingwood and Pegswood districts.

      It is unlikely that any of the seams below the Plessey will be wrought in the Ashington district until the higher seams are nearing exhaustion. It would not be wise to judge their merits through an isolated boring. For example, there does not appear to be any equivalent of the Harvey Coal of Pegswood in the Ashington 69 Carl shaft boring, unless indeed it is represented by the 3-in, coal at 19 fathoms below the Beaumont ; alternatively the coal may be affected by a 'wash-out' known in the seam at Pegswood. There is, however, good reason to assume that the Harvey of Pegswood is present in the Ashington Company's royalty, at least north of Bothal Park, as it has been mined right up to the railway from the west, or Pegswood, side.

      The Plessey Coal (so important south of Morpeth) here varies between 2 ft. 8 in. and 3 ft. in thickness. Though hitherto little wrought it is now being opened up, since the Low Main and some of the higher coals are nearing exhaustion. At Woodhorn it is as yet untouched, but has been proved in several borings at from 7 to 8 fathoms below the Low Main. There it varies from 2 ft. 3 in. to 2 ft. 9 in., and is often splinty. It is being exploited in the neighbouring Newbiggin Colliery, where the seam averages 3 ft. in thickness.

      A coal (the Bottom Plessey), 2 ft. to 2 ft. 6 in. thick, has been found all over this region 6 to 8 fathoms below the Plessey, but it has not yet received any attention.

      A core-boring made in 1929 afforded a good opportunity to examine the strata between the Plessey and the Low Main. There were 12 fathoms of alternating shale and sandstone, with a 4-in. coal. The 15 ft. of shales immediately above the Plessey were fairly rich in shells, mostly non-marine lamellibranchs. A large collection was made here, and of the many specimens named the majority were referred to Carbonicola cf. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), but there were also Anthracomya cf. modiolaris, A. cf. curtata (Brown), Carbonicola aquilina, C. aff. aquilina, C. cf. exigua, C. cf. fulva Davies and Trueman, C. cf. bipennis (Brown), C. cf. similis (Brown), C. phrygiana W. B. Wright, C. cf. phrygiana W. B. Wright, C. cf. retrotracta W. B. Wright, C. cf. affinis Davies and Trueman, C. ? aff. concinna, C. spp. The genus Naiadites was represented by N. modiolaris, N. triangularis (j. de C. Sow.), N. carinata, N. cf. carinata, N. cf. producta Brown, whilst Spirorbis and ostracods were scattered sporadically throughout. Fossil plants were scarce, and consisted of a few species of Mariopteris and Neuropteris.

      The Low Main Coal, being one of the best seams in the Coal Measures of Northumberland, and a steam coal of excellent quality, has been extensively worked. It seldom falls below a thickness of 4 ft. and is often over 6 ft. In the Ashington Carl shaft the seam was 6½ ft. thick at 90 fathoms from the surface, the section being :-

Ft. In.
Coal 0
Band 0
Coal 4
Band 0 4
Coal 0

   70 The seam section is fairly regular ; occasionally the top coal is missing, and the band (called 'brat' in this area) is covered by several feet of 'ramble'—a shale with rootlets, akin to a fireclay —which is used for brick-making.

      At Woodhorn the seam has been almost wrought out. Southwards it has been mined as far as the 'Stakeford Dyke', a fault running west by south. Across this it has been got in North Seaton pit, and levels in the coal on either side of the disturbance show that the throw is about 80 fathoms to the north.

      North of Woodhorn shafts a 'nip-out' occurs in the seam. This is an intercalation of thin bands of sediment rather than a case of contemporaneous erosion. For example, about 300 yards north of Third House the section was :—

Ft. In.
Coarse coal 0
Ramble 0
Coarse coal 0 10
Band 0
Coarse coal 0
Band 0 3
Coal 1 9
Band 0 4
Coal 0 10
Total 5 8


      Northwards the bands appear to thicken and the various coal-leaves are much wider apart, as is shown by a boring from the Yard seam half a mile north by east of Third House. Here the Low Main is represented by several poor seams a few feet apart, the best, 2 ft. 5 in. thick about 33 fathoms below the Yard, having the following section :—


Ft. In.
Coal with a little splint 1 0
Dark shale 0 4
Coal 1 1


      Newbiggin Colliery, east of Woodhorn village, was sunk north of the edge of the 'nip-out,' and a 'staple' from the Yard to the Plessey passed through an 11-inch coal, possibly about the Low Main horizon. This seam was explored for some distance on either side of the staple, and rapidly increased to 5 ft. 4 in. in one direction and 7 ft. in the other ; details of the 7 ft. section were :-


Ft. In.
Splint coal 0 3
Coal 0 4
Splint coal 0 4
Coal 3 8
Band 0 4
Coal 1 7
Splint coal 0 1
Band 0 1
Coal 0 4

    71  This section is reminiscent of the Low Main in the Woodhorn workings to the south. Unfortunately the abnormal titickness was purely local.

      A similar partition of the Low Main is also known in the North Seaton workings south of the 'Stakeford Dyke,' and the edge of the impoverishment has been traced several miles southwards into the Blyth country. Along the coastal strip, north of Woodhorn and Newbiggin, it might be said that the Low Main is unworkable, and around Cresswell and Ellington it is either entirely absent or is represented by a very thin seam or seams.

      The beds between the Low Main and Five-Quarter were examined in a 'cross-cut' driven from the Low Main to the Bensham. Shales about 25 ft. above the Low Main yielded a fair number of shells. Spirorbis and ostracods were scattered throughout, but species of Carbonicola were most abundant. The following specimens were named :—Antitracomya sp., Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. cf. aquilina, C. phrygiana W. B. Wright, C. aff. phrygiana W. B. Wright C. aff. concinna W. B. Wright, C. fulva Davies and Trueman, C. cf. venusta Davies and Trueman,  C. cf. communis Davies and Trueman, C. regularis ? Trueman, C. cf. planitumida Trueman, C. radiata W. B. Wright ? Naiadites sp.

      In a thin irony band among these fossiliferous shales was a new species of the arthropod Belinurus. Arthropods are known in other coalfields, e.g. in the Coalbrookdale Coalfield we have Prestwichia anthrax, P. rotundata and Belinurus bellulus, but so far this is the first record of such remains in Northumberland. They have since been found at the same horizon a few miles to the south, in the River Blyth near Hartford Bridge.

      The Five-Quarter is a good steam coal, though not quite so good as the Low Main. It has been extensively mined at Ashington, where the seam was 3½ ft thick (top coal, 1 ft. 11½ in. ; band, 4½ in. ; bottom coal, 1 ft. 2 in.). Elsewhere in the district the lower leaf is in two divisions, and an average section is :-


Ft. In.
Coal 1 10
Band 0 4
Coal 0 3
Band 0
Coal 0 7
Total 3


     72 Towards the western end of the Ashington royalty, near the London & North Eastern main line, the seam has three bands, as follows :—


Ft. In.
Coal 1 11½
Band 0
Coal 0 10
Band 0 7
Coal 0 7
Band 0 3
Coal 0
Total 4


      This is very similar to the section in the seam around High Stead.

      About half a mile north of Bothal Brick and Tile Works the Five-Quarter is only a short distance above the Low Main ; on an average the interval is about 20 ft., although locally as little as 10 ft. Here also the dip in both seams is almost due north, but approaching Coney Garth the prevalent south-easterly direction is again in evidence.

      Throughout most of the Ashington district the Five-Quarter is surmounted by shales which yielded :—Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. aff. aquilina, C. aff. fulva Davies and Trueman, C. aff. phrygiana W. B. Wright, C. planitumida Trueman, C. sp., Naiadites cf. carinata (J. de C. Sow.), N. sp.

      Eastwards from Ashington the coal is split by a thick band, and at Woodhorn the seam was in two divisions, an upper one, 3 ft. 2 in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. 2 in. ; band, 6 in.; coal, 1 ft. 6 in.), separated by 11½ ft. from a lower one only 1 ft. 3 in. thick. In the adjoining Newbiggin pit the Five-Quarter was in much the same state, although both the top coal and band of the upper division were a foot thicker. In neither pit has the seam yet been worked, but it has been tried in the North Seaton district to the south, in spite of the thickness of the band.

      North of Woodhorn, towards the New Moor Fault, a boring below the Yard Coal, half a mile or so east by north of Third House, cut two coals at 24 and 28 fathoms respectively below the Yard. These might conceivably represent the Five-Quarter. The upper bed was 3 ft. 1 in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. 6½ in. ; band, 6½ in. ; coal, 1 ft.) and the lower 1 ft. 7 in. (coal, 1 ft. 3 in. ; blackstone with coal traces 4 in.).

      The Bensham Coal, 2 ft. 4 in. thick in the Ashington Carl shaft, is separated from the Five-Quarter by about 30 ft. of strata, mostly sandstone. As yet the only workings are in small areas west and south of the Ashington pits (where it varies between 2 ft. 2 in. and 2 ft. 9 in., although occasionally dropping to 1 ft. 11 in.), and north of Ashington farm, where the seam reaches the exceptional thickness of 3½ ft. (top coal, 3 ft. 3 in. ; band, 1 in. ; coal, 2 in.). Between Ashington and Woodhorn nothing is known of the Bensham. 73 At Ashington there is only one coal at this horizon, but at Woodhorn, as at Newhiggin hard by, there are two seams about 3 fathoms apart. At Newbiggin the upper is termed the Bensham (perhaps because it is the thicker seam), and the lower the Stone Coal. Whether these two combine towards the west to make the Ashington Bensham is uncertain ; it is possible that the upper is cut out by the overlying thick sandstone. Whatever the explanation, the phenomenon is not confined to this district, but is known in other parts of the Sheet. Around Hemscott Hill, for example, two seams also occur at this horizon. At Newbiggin the Bensham has been tried, but the Stone Coal is as yet untouched.

      The Yard Coal, one of the most persistent seams north of the Tyne, lies about 15 fathoms above the Bensham, the intervening sandstone being a very constant feature. It is a hot coal, burns very freely and brightly, leaves little ash and that brown and heavy ; these features make it in great demand as a house coal, perhaps indeed the best in the Coal Measures.

      At Newbiggin, the Yard Coal workings, 100 fathoms from the surface, extend out to sea until stopped towards the north-east by the New Moor Fault, which, about a mile east of high-water mark, has a downthrow of 94 ft. to the north.

      At Newbiggin and Woodhorn there is sometimes a band from 2½ to 7 in. thick, separating an upper 1-in. leaf of coal from the main portion of the seam (2 ft. to 3 ft. 3 in.). At Woodhorn the coal is almost entirely wrought out over the whole of the royalty, from the New Moor Fault in the north to the ' Stakeford Dyke ' in the south : it was undisturbed except by the smallest of faults, and its quality maintained a high standard. Beyond any doubt this and the Low Main are the best coals of the Woodhorn district.

      Around Ashington, where the sandstone beneath the coal reaches its maximum of 22 fathoms, the Yard is largely wrought out. The outcrop is seen in a tributary of the How Burn, just above the railway-bridge north of Bothal Park. Thence it probably follows the east bank of the Bothal Burn for some distance before striking south-west towards Whitefield. The roof-metals in the Woodhorn workings yielded a fair number of plants, among which were :—Alethopteris decurrens (Artis), Alethopteris lonchitica (Schloth.), Mariopteris muricata (Schloth.), Mariopteris nervosa (Brongn.), Neuropteris gigantea Sternb., Sphenopteris sp., Asterophyllites grandis Sternb., Calamites sp., Sphenophyllum cuneifolium Sternb., Lepidodendron lycopodioides Sternb., Lepidostrobus sp.

      In the adjoining Newbiggin Colliery the following plants and shells were obtained :—Mariopteris muricata (Schloth.), Neuropteris gigantea Sternb., Calamites undulatus Sternb., Sigillaria sp., Cordaites principalis (Germar), Pinnularia capillacea L. & H., Anthracomya pulchra, A. aff. lanceolata Hind., A. aff. pumila Salter, A. aff. rubida Davies and Trueman, Naiadites producta (Brown), N. cf. subtruncata Brown.

    74  Shells above the Yard do not appear to be of widespread occurrence ; in addition to those found at Newbiggin a few were found in the roof of the seam in an underground boring at Ashington. These included Naiadites cf. producta (Brown), Carbonicola and Spirorbis.

      From 12 to 15 fathoms of strata (often including two thin coals) separate the Yard from the Main Coal. This seam has been widely worked at Ashington, and the outcrop has been proved over a considerable distance in the Coney Garth district. The Main was probably one of the earliest seams wrought hereabouts, mainly on account of its thickness, and quite possibly also because it could he reached at fairly shallow depths. As a rule the seam is split into leaves by several thin bands, though near the crop there is 6 to 7 ft. of coal in one bed. The section in the Carl shaft was :


Ft. In.
Coal 3 11
Black metal and coal 0 10
Black splint 2 0
Coal, coarse 2 2
Seggar clay 1 6
Coal, coarse 1 4
Total 11 9

     North of the shaft the coal wrought as the Main varies from 2 ft. 10 in. to 3 ft. 5 in. Near Woodhorn Moor the section is :

Ft. In.
Band 0
Coal 2 3
Band 0
Coal 0 9
Total 3 2

      Several levels hereabouts show that the interval between the seam and the High Main above is only 34 ft., as compared with the 72 ft. or so of the shaft. Perhaps the seam wrought here as the Main is really the top portion of the coal, which seems to split quite close to the Ashington shafts. Much the same conditions obtain in the New Moor shaft, to the north, where the sequence
is :
Strata 6 fathoms.
Coal 3 ft. 4 in.
Strata 8 fathoms.
      Again, between Ashington and Woodhorn, a coal unrepresented at Ashington occurs 6 fathoms below the High Main. This upper portion of the Main has recently been named the Diamond Seam,75and it appears to be a fairly good, hard, steam coal. At Woodhorn the thick Main Coal is rather dirty, and until recently has not been wrought to any great extent. In the Woodhorn shaft the seam, with bands, was 9 ft. 5 in. thick, as follows :-


  Ft. In   Ft. In
Coal 1 10   4   6
Band 0 3
Coal 2 5
Band 0 2   1   11
Post 1 5
Metal 0 4
Coal 1 3   3   0
Band 0 5
Coal, splint 0 3
Coal, coarse 1 1

      Occasionally only the upper part is removed, since a complete winning is both troublesome and expensive. A better section is found in the undersea workings at Newbiggin Colliery, as follows :—


  Ft. In   Ft. In
Coal 1 11        
Band 0 1 4
Coal 2    
Seggar       0
Coal       3 2


       Here the coal between this seam and the High Main has been called the New Main, and is the equivalent of the Diamond Coal at Woodhorn. The New Main is usually separated from the Main by 4 to 5 fathoms of rock, dwindling to 9½ ft. about a mile undersea, where the Yard workings beneath were stopped by a fault, 15 fathoms down east. Borings here gave the seams as follows :


      Ft. In   Ft. In
NEW MAIN   Top coal 3 1      
Band 0 2 5 11
Bottom coal 2 8    
    Metals       9 6
    Coal 4 2      
  Band 0 6    
MAIN Coal 1 1 7 7
  Band 0 7    
  Coal 1 3    


       The seams were 14 ft. apart in a second boring 160 yards farther east. Above the Main were a few fossil plants, including Lepidophloios laricinus Sternb., and Sigillaria tesselata Brongn., and over the New Main were Neuropteris sp., Sphenophyllum cuneifolium Sternb., S. saxifragaefolium Sternb., Sigillaria tesselata Brongn., S. sp.

76 The High Main, a steam coal of first-class quality, is being extensively mined in the Ashington district. The outcrop has been proved from the southern edge of the Sheet as far as the New Moor Fault, down north about 100 ft. The coal was 5 ft. in the Ashington pits and showed : top coal, 3 ft. 4 in. ; band, 3 in.; coal, 1 ft. 5 in.; it remains fairly constant north and west of the shafts. Toward Ashington Farm there are occasionally two thin bands, as for example half a mile west of the farm, where the seam was :—


Ft. In.
Coal 1 5
Band 0 5
Coal 1 7
Band 0 8
Coal 0 10
Total 4 11


      The lower hand is as much as 2 ft. thick near the outcrop to the west.
      Two contemporaneous 'wash-outs' affect the seam, both starting east of Ashington Colliery. One runs in a south-westerly direction and has been followed for about a mile, while the other runs north-east; the latter may be connected to a 'wash-out' recently touched near Woodhorn village. Here the High Main is not nearly so thick as at Ashington. In the Woodhorn shaft it was 2 ft. 10 in. thick, dwindling southwards to 2 feet. In the adjoining Newbiggin pit it was 3½ ft. thick about 70 fathoms from the surface, but so far has not been mined to any extent.

      In the roof-strata at Ashington a few plants were obtained, including Alethopteris lonchitica (Schloth.), Annularia radiata Brongn., Calamites cf. carinata Sternb., C. sp.

      Several fathoms above the coal lies the High Main 'mussel-bed,' universally present in Northumberland. The only local outcrop known is in the River Wansbeck, just beyond the southern edge of the one-inch Sheet 9, where the following were found :— Lingula mytiloides J. Sow. (in a layer separate from the other shells), Anthracomya sp., A. ? adamsi Salter sensu lato, A. cf. lanceolata Hind, Carbonicola cf. concinna W. B. Wright, C. cf. radiata W. B. Wright, C. ? sp. nov., ostracods and Spirorbis.

      The 'mussel-bed' is about 8 fathoms above the coal in the Ashington district, where the shells are distributed through 9½ ft. of shale. A few specimens were collected from the roof-metals at Newbiggin. Lingula mytiloides was present, along with several species of Carbonicola and Naiadites.

      Around Ashington some 500 ft. of strata are known above the High Main. At least 480 ft. were penetrated in a boring half a mile south of Woodhorn Colliery. 77 They are for the most part sandstones and shaly sandstones, with subordinate shales and a few thin coals. Of the latter none has been mined in this particular region, although there were workings in one of them, the Blackclose Coal (2½ to 3 ft. thick), just beyond the south margin of one-inch Sheet 10, south of the 'Stakeford Dyke.' This same Blackclose seam was found in a boring at Ashington Farm, 3½ ft. thick at 32 fathoms from the surface. It had thinned to 1 ft. 10 in. at the Woodhorn pits, and was even less than this half a mile to the north.

      A 3-ft. coal, about 20 fathoms above the Blackclose, was noted at the top of a boring half a mile north of Woodhorn Colliery. Thinning rapidly to the dip, it was only 1 ft. 2 in. thick in the Woodhorn shafts.

      Economically the most important bed in these high strata is the Woodhorn Sandstone, quite 80 ft. thick. Its base throughout one-inch Sheets 9 and 10 is about 50 fathoms above the High Main Coal, so that it may well be the equivalent of the Grindstone Sill of the Newcastle area. As seen in a quarry at Woodhorn village there is an unbroken 70-ft. face of brownish sandstone, fine-grained and sparingly micaceous. Here it is much used for grindstones and facing work. The lowest beds are well seen on the coast, north of Beacon Point, where the rock is variegated in colour, a reddish and greyish pebbly sandstone with layers of bright red marl. South of Beacon Point the exposures are discontinuous. judging from underground mining evidence, there may be much minor faulting.

      The strata around the point at the north end of Newbiggin Bay are highly false-bedded, coarse, pebbly sandstones with inclusions of reddish, greenish, and grey shales and occasionally purple, sandy shales. The dip is S. by E. at 4°. Underground levels in the Yard Coal hereabouts show these beds to be more than 80 fathoms above the High Main. Still higher strata are seen at Spital Carrs, at the south end of Newbiggin Bay, where they are involved in a powerful disturbance, most probably the surface position of the 'Stakeford Dyke,' so that dips vary from 5° to 33°. At the headland itself is a thick-bedded yellowish sandstone, faulted on either side, with dips northwards from 10° to 42°. The Dyke ' therefore seems to be a compound fracture, as is the great Howick Fault. To the south is quite a different sandstone, for it is coarse, gritty and pebbly in the lowest portions. This (the North Seaton Sandstone) has been extensively quarried in past times. One quarry is still in operation, and presents a 25-ft. face of medium-grained, sparingly micaceous sandstone. This is probably the Woodhorn stone, though apparently not quite so good in quality. Beneath is a varied assemblage of strata, the complete section being :—


Ft. In.
Black shales, the lower part parroty, and with
coal threads
2 6
Coal (poor) 1 3
Fireclay 3 6
Sandstone, rapidly varying from 14½ ft. to 25 0
Shales 2 0
Sandy shales 1 0
Grey shales with clay-band ironstone ribs 5 0
Blue shales with Carbonicola shells 8 6
Coal (poor) 1 10
Fireclay 3 3
Sandstone with obscure plant-remains 12 0


      Longhirst to Ellington.—This district lies well to the north of Pegswood and Ashington, between the South Linton and New Moor Faults. Beginning with the lower measures, an 18-in. leafy coal is seen in the stream alongside Cockle Park grit quarry, but on the whole little is known of the coals below the Plessey, except near Longhirst Grange, where they have been proved on the north side of a fault directed towards Butterwell. Here the Brockwell (2 ft.) lies 95 fathoms from the surface, with the Little and Old Man seams from 25 to 30 fathoms higher. In addition to these three seams, representatives of the Widdrington Five-Quarter, Yard and Beaumont Coals should be present west of the Longhirst-Ulgham road. They should form a valuable reserve for future working, as all are workable north of the South Linton Fault.

      The Plessey Coal was 3 ft. 1 in. thick, at 17½ fathoms from the surface, in a boring close to Longhirst Grange. Elsewhere the seam is much thinner. In the old Longhirst Colliery it was only 17 in., but it improved to 2 ft. 4 in., 45 fathoms down, in a boring, at Crowden Hill, 1¼ miles to the north (top coal, good, 7 in. ; coal, bad, 11 in. ; band, 7 in. ; bottom coal, 3 in.). Recent borings show that the coal is only 10 in. thick at Linton Colliery, while others, near Potland and High Stead, found it about 2 ft. thick, but of poor quality. It has lately been reached by a ' cross-cut ' from the Low Main at New Moor shaft, where it is 2 ft. to 2 ft. 2 in. thick.

      The Low Main Coal is not so important hereabouts as in the Ashington-Woodhorn area. It has been mined from Pegswood as far as the Old Moor Fault, 4 mile north-east of Longhirst, and a boring west of the village found 2½ ft. of coal with 3½ ft. of fireclay roof, beneath 8 fathoms of boulder-clay. In the 17 fathoms of strata below the Five-Quarter in the bore at Crowden Hill no Low Main was found, nor was it present in a second boring ¾ mile to the south-west. 79 It would thus appear that the coal is absent in the Broom Hill-Crowden Hill region. A possible representative 3 fathoms below the Five-Quarter at Linton Colliery is not of much value, as shown by the following section :—


Ft. In.
Foul coal 0 8
Seggar band 0 4
Coarse coal 1 11
Seggar band 0 9
Coal 0 11


      To the south the coal improves slightly. The Potland boring, between the High Stead and Old Moor Faults, proved the seam to be 2 ft. 9½ in. thick, as follows :—


Ft. In.
Blackstone 0 2
Coal 1
Coarse coal 0 2
Coal 1 2


      Still farther south, at New Moor shaft, the coal was in better state, being 3 ft. 5½ in. thick at 86 fathoms from the surface. Here the seam was only 3 fathoms below the Five-Quarter, a coal now much wrought hereabouts, as its many partings do not offer any difficulty to the cutting machines : a representative section is :—


Ft. In.
Coal 2 0
Band 0 4
Coal 0 5
Band 0 3
Coal 0 6
Band 0 8
Coal 1 0

      These bands are a local characteristic : one of them amounted to 1 ft. 7 in., as found near the base of a 7 ft. 8 in. seam at Linton Colliery. Other Five-Quarter workings are active around High Stead, and the outcrop has been inferred from a boring at Crowden Hill. Here the coal lay 21 fathoms from the surface, and was thinner than usual. A second boring, at the south-west corner of the plantation hard by, got the seam 16 fathoms down. Eight fathoms above came a 1 ft. 2 in. coal, probably the Bensham. This is a seam of no great account locally, 2 ft. being its maximum. In the Old Moor shaft it was 1½ ft. thick ; in the New Moor shaft it had increased to 1 ft. 10 in. Four or five fathoms above the Bensham a thin coal is usual, sometimes only 4 to 5 in. thick, at other times as much as 1½ ft. ; occasionally it is represented by 'black metal' or coaly dirt. This may possibly represent the thick seam known as the Bensham at Newbiggin Colliery, but apparently not present in the Ashington district.

      The Yard Coal is the leading seam in this area, an excellent house coal which has been extensively mined. It is usually 2 ft. 10 in. thick, rising to 3 ft. 3 in. 80 Most of the coal has been won from Linton Colliery, where it lay at 49 fathoms ; north of the shaft the workings were stopped by the South Linton Fault, which has been followed for nearly two miles and is seen at the surface in several places in the River Lyne, west of South Linton, where the hade is almost vertical. South of the disturbance the outcrop of the Yard has been traced for over 1½ miles, until it is shifted to the east by the High Stead Fault, and then back again to the west by the Old Moor Fault, half a mile to the south. Several branch-faults hereabouts lead to a highly disturbed area east of Longhirst village. Beyond this is a considerable area of unfaulted ground E. and N.E. of Pegswood, the coal being seen in a tributary streamlet just above the railway bridge N.E. of Pegswood.

      The following plants were collected from the Yard roof-metals at Linton Colliery :—Alethopteris valida (Boulay), Mariopteris muricata (Schloth.), Neuropteris gigantea (Sternb.), N. heterophylla Brongn. Renaultia rotundfolia (Andrae, Calamites carinatus Sternb., C. suckowi Brongn., Lepidophloios laricinus Sternb.

      The Main Coal has been much wrought in the Longhirst district, and in the disused pit south of Longhirst Station was 7 ft. 5 in. thick, at 46½ fathoms from the surface. The coal was wrought north-east of the shaft as far as the Old Moor Fault, which would appear to split near Longhirst Station, one branch striking almost due west and the other continuing on a south-westerly course. To the south of the pit the coal has been wrought up to the New Moor Fault, beyond which the workings were carried right up to the outcrop under 36 ft. of boulder-clay. At Longhirst a single 7 ft. 5 in. seam was wrought ; below this there was a 20-in, band, followed by 2 ft. of coarse coal. A similar division is found in the workings near Old Moor (top coal, 2 ft. 9½ in. ; band, 2 ft 2 in. : coal, 1 ft. 1 in.), but to the east, at New Moor shaft, thin clay partings appear in the coals themselves. Exact correlations hereabouts are most difficult to make ; quite possibly a 3 ft. 4 in. hard coal, only 6 fathoms below the High Main at New Moor shaft, may represent the highest leaf of the Main elsewhere. Further north a rapid degeneration sets in, though whether this is due to wash-outs' or impoverishment is unknown. The seam has not been recognized north of Potland until Linton Colliery is reached ; here it was in poor state, being represented by a 25-in. seam, with a band included. East of this it is again in two portions, as was proved by a boring on the River Lyne, close to Ellington East Moor.

      The High Main, a steam coal of excellent quality, has been much wrought in this area, especially at Linton Colliery and around New Moor shaft. In the intervening trough, between the Old Moor and New Moor Faults, it is, at Longhirst Colliery, 31 fathoms deep, and 32 in. thick. Active mining is now going on around New Moor shaft, where the seam has its usual section :81 top coal, 2 ft. 9 in. to 2 ft. 11 in. ; band, 2½ to 5 in. ; and a bottom coal, 1 ft. 1 in. This is much the same as at Linton, and northeast, of the shaft there is an improvement to 5 ft. 5 in., mostly due to a thickening of the top leaf. Most of the shallower coal has been removed towards High Stead, although a large area is still untapped east of the Potland Burn.

      The High Main 'mussel-bed' is present throughout the district, generally in the shales 3 fathoms above the seam. In addition to the more usual estuarine or freshwater lamellibranchs, a separate layer contains Lingula mytiloides (J. Sow.), a more marine type, as in the River Wansbeck beyond the southern edge of the one-inch map. Specimens collected at Linton included :— Anthracomya cf. cymbula W. B Wright, A. cf. librata W. B. Wright, A. sp. (near A. oblonga W. B. Wright), Carbonicola cf. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. concinna W. B. Wright, C. cf. fulva Davies and Trueman, C. cf. similis Brown, C. sp. nov.? [cf. C. binneyi W. B. Wright], Naiadites cf. quadrata, the annelid Spirorbis and the ostracod 'Beyrichia.'

      Ulgham, Widdrington Station, Highthorn.—This district, lying between the Grange Wood and South Linton Faults, contains a full sequence of coals from the Brockwell up to the High Main. The lower coals are being mined at Stobswood Colliery ; the disused Ulgham and Ferney Beds Collieries worked the Yard Coal of Ashington, also got in recent extensions from Linton Colliery. The High Main, in the Hagg House-Highthorn area, is reached by workings from Ellington Colliery, a short distance east of Ellington village. West of Widdrington Station the beds dip N.E., but elsewhere E. or S.E. at low angles.

      The Stobswood sequence is essentially that of the old Widdrington pits to the north. The lowest seam so far worked is the Widdrington Main, for borings in lower measures have as yet proved disappointing. The coal taken as the Brockwell is never more than 2 ft. thick ; as it is about 20 fathoms below the Widdrington Main, it may eventually be reached by a ' cross-cut ' from the Main workings.

      The Widdrington Main Coal lies at 42½ fathoms in Stobswood Colliery, where it is in two portions, separated by a band 1 ft. 8 in. thick, the top coal being 1 ft. 9 in., and the bottom coal 4 ft. The seam has been wrought eastwards as far as East Stobswood without reaching the outcrop. A fault, down south about 20 fathoms, was struck about 400 yards south of the shaft. South of this disturbance the coal has not been mined beyond Northwood House, in which direction the band increases locally to as much as 4½ ft. It is thought that the band continues to increase southwards, eventually splitting the coal into two separate seams ; this is suggested by a boring 300 yards N.N.W. of Ulgham Grange, which got a 1 ft. 11 in. coal at 63k fathoms and another, 2 ft. 8 in. thick, five fathoms below. Similarly, in a 82 boring 800 yards S.W. of Northwood House, the upper and lower portions of the seam were cut at 42½ fathoms and 46 fathoms respectively.

      The only trials in the Widdrington Five-Quarter (sometimes locally known as the 'Two-foot Seam') are near East Stobswood, where there was a very thick band in the seam, a section being :—


Ft. In.
Coal 2 1
Band 3 0
Coal 0 5
Band 0 3
Coal 0 5


      It seems unlikely that the coal will prove of much value south of Northwood House. The boring near Ulgham Grange found a seam 4 ft. thick, which might be the Widdrington Five-Quarter. It was made up as follows :—


Ft. In.
Coal, hard, splint 0 7
Coal, free 0 6
Coal, hard, splint 0 6
Coal, free 0 11
Band 0
Coal 0
Band 0 4
Coal 0 3


      A working here may be feasible, as access is easy from workings in the Widdrington Yard Coal, 6 fathoms above. Westwards, however, the coal appears to split up, and in the 13 fathoms of measures below the Widdrington Yard, in a boring 800 yards S.W. of Northwood House, there were three coals, the lowest, and thickest, being only nine inches thick.

      The Widdrington Yard Coal is being actively mined south of the Grange Wood Fault, and in this district is probably the most valuable of the Widdrington group. In the Stobswood shaft the seam was 3 ft. 6 in. thick (top coal, 2 ft. ; band, 4 in. ; bottom coal, 1 ft. 2 in.). South of the Grange Wood Fault the seam is much thicker, being as much as 7½ ft. near Widdrington Station, where the following section has been recorded in the workings :—


Ft. In.
Coal 1 10
Band 1 5
Coal 0 8
Band 1 1
Coal 1 3
Band 0 3
Coal, coarse 1 0


       A short distance south of Northwood House trough-faulting brings up the Bottom Beaumont on a level with the Yard workings on either side.83 South of this the Yard is being rapidly mined, the coal being fairly thick. The boring 800 yards S.W. of Northwood House proved the seam 5 ft. 3 in. thick at 27½ fathoms, as follows :—


Ft. In.
Coal 1 10
Band 0 9
Coal 1 9
Band 0 4
Coal 0 6
Coaly stone 0 1


      The low dip should allow of a large area of Yard Coal westward, to the outcrop, half a mile away. Southwards the coal is doubtless workable as far as the South Linton Fault, beyond which nothing is known of the Widdrington coals until the Pegswood area is reached. In conclusion, it should be noted that the following plants were found in the Yard roof-metals, as brought to bank at Stobswood Colliery :— Neuropteris heterophylla Brongn., Renaultia gracilis (Brongn.), Urnatopteris tenella (Brongn.), Annularia radiata Brongn., Calamites sp.

      The Beaumont Coal (Top Beaumont of this area) has been little worked round Stobswood, as it is rarely more than 2 ft. thick. Nevertheless it appears to be quite a persistent seam, recognizable over a wide area. It has been worked near Northwood House, 300 yards north of which it is reached by a 'drift' from the surface. A 'mussel-bed' noticed here, from 7 to 8 fathoms above the seam, seems to be widespread, as it was encountered not only in most of the borings in this vicinity, but also in others 3 miles and more to the north-east. The following fossils were collected from it in the Northwood House drift :— Anthracomya modiolaris? Hind, Carbonicola cf. acuta (J. Sow.), C. aff. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. cf. communis Davies and Trueman, C. cf. obtusa Hind, Naiadites sp. and Spirorbis pusillus (Mart.).

      A thin seam, the Bottom Beaumont, lies about 2 fathoms below the Beaumont proper. It has been proved in many borings, but is rarely more than 1½ ft. thick.

      The Plessey Coal, separated from the Beaumont below by about 20 fathoms of sandstone and shales, was only 1 ft. 3 in. thick in the drift ' to the Beaumont. In the Ulgham district the outcrop has been inferred from borings N.W. of Ulgham Grange. In one of these the coal, at 17 fathoms from the surface, was less than 2 ft. thick and of inferior quality, the section being :—


Ft. In.
Coal, soft, danty 0 5
Coal, hard, splint 0 6
Coal, clean 1 0


     84 In a diamond-boring half a mile east of Ferney Beds the seam was 20 in. thick at 55 fathoms ; details are :—


Ft. In.
Coal 0 10
Shale 0 3
Coal 0 5
Coal and Shale 0 2


       A mile or so farther east there is still no improvement in quality or thickness ; about half a mile N.E. of Highthorn it was represented by 2½ ft. of thin coal and shale bands.

      Throughout this region a 'shell-bed ' lies a few feet above the coal, notably round Ulgham, as well as east of Ferney Beds and in the coastal district round Cresswell. It is probably the most persistent fossiliferous horizon in the Coal Measures between the Wansbeck and the Coquet. From a collection made in the mine at Northwood House the following specimens were obtained :— Anthracomya?, Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. sp., Naidites cf. quadrata (J. de C. Sow.).

      A coal, cut in the mine near Northwood House, about 5 fathoms above the Plessey, was also proved in a boring 130 yds. N.W. of the mine-mouth, where it was 3 ft. 8¾ in. thick, made up as follows :—


Ft. In.
Coal, hard, splint 0
Coal, hard 0
Coal 0
Coal, with thin bands of shale 0 4
Coal, with 1 in. 'brass' near base 1 3
Blackstone and coal mixed 0 4
Coal 0 2
Blackstone and coal mixed 0 2
Coal 0


     About 150 yards east of the boring the coal had thinned to 2 ft. 10 in., with the section :—


Ft. In.
Coal, coarse 0 3
Coaly fireclay 0 1
Coal, bright, coarse at top 1 0
Coal, bright, with a ¼in. soft band 1 0
Coal, brassy 0 6


     Unfortunately the seam continues to deteriorate eastwards, and is quite valueless in the deep boring east of Ferney Beds. Here it was got at 50 fathoms, with a thick band in the middle :—

Ft. In.
Coal 1 0
Shale 0 2
Coal and shale 0 6
Shale 4 6
Coal 1 5
Coal and shale 0 4


   85Near the outcrop, however, it appears to be fairly thick, and may be the coal at one time wrought 600 yds. W.N.W. of Northwood House; traces of shallow workings hereabouts are said to have been in a seam about 6 ft. thick.

About 12 fathoms higher in the sequence lies a 2½-ft. coal, which may well be the Five-Quarter of Ashington. The old pits 200 yards or so east of Northwood House probably reached this seam at relatively shallow depths. The coal was just missed in a boring 300 yards N.N.W. of Ulgham Grange. In that bore it was noticed that the thick white sandstone, which underlies the coal around Northwood House, had for the most part been replaced by shales, with a 25-ft. sandstone in the middle ; this sandstone is exposed in the River Lyne to the south, whilst farther downstream the associated shales with ironstone concretions were noticed in the south bank. The overlying coal was encountered whilst telegraph-poles were being erected on the roadside near Ulgham Grange, and there are old workings to the seam (said to be 2 ft. thick) along the banks of the Lyne hard by.

      The thick sandstone phase beneath the coal at Northwood House also breaks down in an easterly direction, being replaced by shales, among which coals begin to appear. This is well shown by a number of borings between Ferney Beds and Widdrington Station, in which a 2 ft. 9 in. seam was proved about 3 fathoms below the Five-Quarter. This coal might quite possibly represent the Low Main of the district to the south. Unfortunately, however, it does not persist for long, and in company with the Five-Quarter thins out when followed eastwards ; confirmation of this was got in the diamond-boring at the road-fork half a mile east of Ferney Beds, where the Five-Quarter and associated coals were quite worthless.

      Borings between Ferney Beds and Widdrington Station show that there are two coals, only a few feet apart, lying respectively 6 and 8 fathoms above the Five-Quarter. Half a mile east of Ferney Beds only one seam was present, 9 fathoms above the Five-Quarter. This is probably the lower coal, for the upper one is beneath a coarse sandstone with conglomeratic base, quite possibly marking the edge of a local 'wash-out'

      Farther east, however, two seams are again present, and at the Hemscott Hill borings (one-inch Sheet 10) the higher one varies from 2½ ft. to 3 ft. 4 in. These two coals are the equivalents of the Bensham and Stone Coals of the Newbiggin area, and very likely of the Queen and Little Wonder Coals of Broomhill.

      The Yard Coal of Ashington has been much wrought at Ferney Beds and east of Ulgham Grange. There is an outcrop in the River Lyne, 86south-east of Ulgham Grange, a short distance below the railway-bridge. Here the coal is 3 ft. 4 in. thick, and rests as usual on a thick sandstone, which floors the course of the stream ; this sandstone is shaly, false-bedded and generally coarse. A short distance south of the burn the coal-outcrop is shifted about half a mile to the east by the South Linton Fault, 27 fathoms down north. The Yard Coal was at one time wrought southwards to the Lyne from the old Ulgham Grange Colliery, a little more than half a mile due east of Ulgham Grange, where it was known as the Bottom Coal. Here it was 3 ft. 5 in. thick, and about 15 fathoms from the surface ; seven feet higher, in this shaft, there was another coal known as the Top Seam, 3½ ft. thick, as follows :—

Ft. In.
Coal 0 5
Black metal 0 5
Coal 0 3
Black metal 0 5
Coal 2 0



      A seam on the same horizon is known in the Linton district, and there is an exposure in the River Lyne downstream from the Yard outcrop, covered by at least 10 ft. of coarse sandstone. North of the Ulgham Grange road the Yard outcrop is broken by several faults ; the largest, the Hagg House Fault, trends W.N.W.- E.S.E., and is from 17 to 21 fathoms down north. This shifts the Yard outcrop to the east, and on the north side the coal was reached by an outcrop mine (the disused Ferney Beds Colliery) on the roadside 500 yards E.N.E. of Ferney Beds farm. Here it was known as the Ferney Beds seam. The dip is only 2° to the east, and although a fair amount of coal has been removed much remains untouched. The seam was 4 ft. 3 in. thick near the mine-mouth, and made up as follows :—


Ft. In.
Coal 0 4
Band 0
Coal 1 1
Band 0
Coal 2 9


      The section of the Yard in this area is much more variable than it is in the country to the south. Towards the coast the seam is split into two leaves by a fairly thick band ; for example, in the boring south of Hemscott Hill the seam, at a depth of 48 fathoms, was 4 ft. 10 in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. 5 in. ; dark fireclay, 1 ft. 4 in. ; bottom coal, 2 ft. 1 in.).

       The Main Coal has not been worked anywhere in this region, and its outcrop is largely inferred. The seam is not present in a boring on the roadside at Houndalee, nor in the diamond-boring at the road-fork a little more than half a mile to the south, and about the same distance east of Ferney Beds ; probably the outcrop lies east of these. It has been proved in other bores 1,000 yards north-east of Highthorn, and again farther north. 87In both cases the Main Coal was in two divisions, as it is in the New Moor and Woodhorn districts, where the upper portion is called the Diamond Seam. The higher seam was over 3½ feet thick, with thin shale and fireclay partings ; it is separated from the lower one (3 ft. 3 in.) by 3 to 4 fathoms of dark-grey shale, with post girdles and ironstone nodules and bands. The outcrop of the Main on the one-inch map is to be taken as referring to the lower division. Eastwards these two divisions unite to give a very thick seam, as shown by the boring 600 yards south of Hemscott Hill, where the coal, with bands, was 10 ft. 10 in. thick, 37 fathoms or so from the surface ; the section was :—


Ft. In.
Coal 3 4
Dark seggar 0 7
Blackstone with coal traces 0 5
Dark seggar 0
Coal with thin seggar partings 0 10
Seggar 1
Coal, splint 0 4
Seggar 0 5
Coal 1 4
Seggar 0 5
Coal 1 1
Blackstone with coal traces 0 8


       The lower four members of this section agree very closely with the lower division of the Main in the boring about a mile N.N.E. of Highthorn, which showed :—


Ft. In.
Coal 1 6
Seggar 0
Coal 1
Coal, splint, with coal threads 0 3


       The High Main Coal is the highest seam wrought hereabouts, and lies at the top of the Productive Group. An outcrop was at one time seen in the Lyne near South Linton, where the coal was wrought during a miners' strike. Here it lies on the north side of the South Linton Fault, and there are traces of old shallow shafts to the coal ; access was also got from the Yard seam workings to the south of the Fault. The coal was 3 ft. 6 in. to 3 ft. 9 in. thick, with a 1 to 7-in, band in the middle. The seam has been tried in the trough between the South Linton and Hagg House Faults. At present it is being rapidly worked in the Hagg House-Highthorn area, being conveyed to the Ellington Colliery, half a mile S.E. of Ellington. Here there is a considerable improvement, for the seam is 5 ft. thick a mile E. of Hagg House, and in borings between Highthorn and Hemscott Hill varies between 4 ft. and 5½ ft.

      The High Main 'shell-bed' is present throughout this district. The fossils are spread through a thickness of 30 to 36 ft. of shales with intercalations of sandstone bands. 88 They are for the most part freshwater 'mussels', along with ostracods, Spirorbis and fish-scales. The following were noted in borings near Hemscott Hill :—Carbonicola acutella W. B. Wright, C. cf. atra Trueman, C. ? concinna W. B. Wright, C. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), (sensu lato), C. aff. aquilina, C. ? communis Davies and Trueman, C. spp., Naiadites cf. producta (Brown), N. subtruncata, N. sp.

      Apparently a continuation of the Grange Wood fault must pass a short distance to the north of Hemscott Hill, as the High Main was not present in the deep boring 330 yards north of the farm. This fault would amount to 24 fathoms down south, and unfortunately throws out the three thickest and best seams of this locality, i.e. the Yard, Main and High Main Coals.

     Cresswell and Lynemouth.—Rock-exposures abound on the shore between Cresswell and the mouth of the Lyne, but they are subjected to much faulting and do not afford continuous sections.

      (a) Measures up to the High Main Coal.— Most of the mining has so far been confined to the Cresswell area, in the Yard, Main and High Main Coals; these are got at Ellington Colliery near Dean House. Lower measures have been proved at several places by borings, one of these, at the colliery, being carried to a depth of 196 fathoms. In this bore the 125 fathoms of strata below the Yard show little of value, the best seam being the Five-Quarter, 22 fathoms below the Yard; this is 2 ft. 7½-in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. 4¾ in.; band, 6 in.; coal, 1 ft. 1 in.). The seam 7 fathoms below the Five-Quarter may represent the Low Main, but it is of inferior quality, a 3-in, band separating a 9-in, upper coal from a 4-in, lower seam. The Plessey is only 2 ft. 4 in. thick, whilst the Beaumont and Brockwell Coals are under 1½ feet thick. Another boring, about 500 yards west of Cresswell village, was continued to 118 fathoms, and in the 44 fathoms of strata below the Yard the best coal was the Bensham, 1 ft. 10 in. (including a 5-in, band), whilst the Five-Quarter appeared to be represented by a 14-in, seam with blackstone partings, separated from a 9-in, coarse coal by a 3 ft. 2 in. band. The Plessey, with its overlying mussel-bed,' cut at 118 fathoms, was 2 ft. 2 in. thick (coarse coal, 1 ft. 1½-in.; blackstone, 5½ in.; coal, 7 in.). South of Cresswell, a boring on the coast found the Five-Quarter still in very poor state; though totalling 3 ft. 6 in., this was made up entirely of thin coal and blackstone partings. A better result was got north of Blakemoor House, where the coal was 3 ft. 8 in. thick at 71 fathoms from the surface; the overlying shales contained a few species of Carbonicola and Naiadites. In this boring the Plessey was only 1 ft. 2 in., but the Beaumont reached the unusual thickness of 3 feet. Twelve fathoms above the Beaumont was a 'shell-bed' which yielded a few examples of Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.). In none of the other borings was the Beaumont of any value.

   89 The Yard Coal has been mined eastwards from Ellington Colliery, between two roughly parallel faults. The northern of - these has a downthrow of 14 fathoms to the north ; the other has not been proved, but would appear to have a throw in the opposite direction. There is more faulting west of the shaft, the Yard workings being brought almost opposite the Five-Quarter by a 22-fathom fault, trending 30° S. of E. over the short distance proved.
On the River Lyne, 400 yards due south of Dean House, the seam, cut at 100 fathoms, was 5 ft. 5 in. thick ; the full section was :—


Ft. In.
Coal 3 10½
Blackstone with coal threads 0
Coal 0
Blackstone with coal threads 0 6
Coal 0
Blackstone with coal threads 0 5
Coarse coal 0
Blackstone 0


      Near the mouth of the Lyne the coal has been approached from the High Main workings, north of the New Moor Fault. In the Cresswell district the coal is as yet untouched, although proved in several bores. In the Ashington-Woodhorn area the Yard is generally 2 ft. 10 in. to 3 ft. 6 in. thick ; hereabouts the tendency is for a thicker but more ' bandy ' seam. For example the following section is from a boring situated a little to the west of Cresswell village :—


Ft. In.
Coal with splint partings 2
Seggar with coal threads 0
Coarse coal 0
Coal with splint partings 0 11½
Dark seggar 0
Splint coal 0
Dark seggar 0 6
Coarse coal 0 11
Total 5 7


      About a mile farther north, between Blakemoor House and Hemscott Hill, the Yard was 4 ft. 10 in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. 5 in. ; band, 1 ft. 4 in. ; bottom coal, 2 ft. 1 in.). North of Hemscott Hill the coal is thrown up by the Grange Wood Fault, north of which it was 6 ft. 8 in. thick, with several fireclay bands (see p. 96).

      The Main Coal has been wrought in the trough-faulted strip around Cresswell Hall. The seam has not the reputation of the Yard or High Main, and in consequence has not received so much attention. In this region a seam, known locally as the 'Dirty Coal,' lies only a few feet below that wrought as the Main. There can be little doubt that the 'Dirty Coal' is in reality the bottom portion of the Main ; farther north the two unite to form a very thick coal (over 9 ft. at Cresswell) with many thin bands of seggar and blackstone. 90 This condition persists as far north as Blakemoor House, where the seam totalled 10 ft. 10 in. Farther north it begins to split again, for on the opposite side of the 'trouble ' (Grange Wood Fault), at Hemscott Hill, the Main was in three parts. Subdivision occurs west of Cresswell, as was proved near the Saw Mill, west of Cresswell Hall, in a 'cross-cut' to the High Main from lower measures ; the record was lower or 'Dirty Coal' 3 ft. 0½ in. (top coal, 1 ft. 6 in. ; band, 1½ in. ; coal, 1 ft. 5 in.), upper coal 3 ft. 9 in. Near Highthorn, to the west, the coal is still in two divisions.

      The High Main is a good steam coal, now being rapidly mined in the Cresswell district, where it averages 4 ft., occasionally increasing to 5 ft. It is being wrought under the sea east of Cresswell Hall and westwards towards Highthorn, near which the coal must outcrop. North of Hemscott Hill it is thrown out by the Grange Wood Fault, and does not reappear until the Elm Bush district is reached, four miles to the north.

      In the Lynemouth area two shafts have recently been sunk to the High Main, 4 ft. thick, lying at 80 fathoms from the surface. These pits are intended to work a large area, which could otherwise only be mined at great expense in haulage and upkeep of roads, from Woodhorn to the south or Ellington to the north. During sinking the following shells were collected from the High Main 'shell-bed' :—Anthracomya sp., A. cymbula W. B. Wright, A. aff. cymbula W. B. Wright, A. wardi Hind non Salter, A. sp. nov., Carbonicola spp., C. fulva Davies and Trueman, C. cf. con-cinna W. B. Wright, C. cf. communis Davies and Trueman, C. atra Trueman, Naiadites triangularis (J. de C. Sow.), N. cf. triangularis (J. de C. Sow.), N. aff. producta (Brown).

      (b) Measures above the High. Main Coal.—These are best known from borings, though some of the surface exposures are not without interest. The highest beds of all are seen in the banks of the Lyne S.W. of Dean House, below the mouth of Haydon Letch. Here are coarse sandstones or grits, greyish and reddish, and at times very pebbly. These are 74 fathoms above the High Main, as shown by an adjacent boring, where the top 20 feet are red and grey sandstones with green 'panels', followed by 20 ft. or so of red and blue shale, overlying about 80 ft. of red and grey sandstone. This thick mass of sandstone is the equivalent of that so extensively quarried for grindstones at Woodhorn. Coloured beds like those at the top of this boring are very rare in Coal Measure strata, but elsewhere within one-inch Sheet 10 they come in at the same horizon, at Hauxley and Newbiggin (see pp. 77 and 113).

      Along the lower reaches of the Lyne are intermittent exposures of sandstones and sandy shales ; disturbed strata on the foreshore near by suggest faulted ground hereabouts.

    91  There are many broken exposures along the coast between Cresswell and Lyne Skears. A pale-brown or pepper-coloured sandstone, highly false-bedded, forms the sea-wall at the Lifeboat Station. Southwards this rock covers the foreshore as far as Quarry House, where a boring proved it to be about 50 fathoms above the High Main. Near Quarry House the section ends in shales faulted against the yellowish, false-bedded sandstone of the quarry, and this in turn is thrown out by a second fault, (9 or 10 fathoms in the local coal workings), bringing up lower rocks to the south.

      At Snab Point 6 ft. of reddish boulder-clay rests on 14 ft. of hard sandy shales—almost a shaly sandstone—with hard, rusty-weathering, ferruginous patches up to 18 in. thick, and oval concretions 16 in. across. The dip is almost due west at about 2° ; farther south it is 3° or 4° to N.W. by W., but seawards the strata flatten out. Near the top of the cliff are two thin coals, the upper one a 9 to 12-in, seam surmounted by 6 ft. of sandstone, and separated from the lower (a 13-in. seam) by a thick bed of shale. Beneath the lower coal are several more feet of shale, occasionally sandy ; in the lowest beds some fossiliferous layers were observed. These yielded :—Carbonicola cf. acuta (J. Sow), C. aff. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. aff. concinna W. B. Wright, C. aff. os-lancis W. B. Wright, C. sp., Naiadites spp., Spirorbis sp., and a fish-tooth. This 'mussel-bed' may well be that noticed about 35 fathoms above the High Main in the borings south of Cresswell, and on the River Lyne, south and west of Dean House, where, as on the coast, it was associated with coals.

      Coals in the Upper Group are known at many localities, but are relatively unimportant. The most persistent is the Blackclose seam, 25 to 30 fathoms above the High Main. It was wrought a long time ago south of the Stakeford Dyke, at Blackclose on the River Wansbeck, just beyond the edge of one-inch Sheet 10. At Lynemouth Colliery it was 1 ft. 11 in. thick, separated by 10 in. of fireclay from an upper 6-in. seam ; four fathoms higher is another coal position, represented by two 1-ft. seams separated by 5½ ft. of shale and fireclay. A third coal horizon is represented by thin seams a short distance beneath the thick mass of sandstone at the top of the shafts. In the Cresswell district these three coal positions recur, and the two highest coals, 12 ft. apart, are probably those already noted as outcropping at the top of the cliff south of Snab Point. Here the measures dip inland, and about 700 yards from the coast there are traces of old pits of no great size. It is not known how deep these were ; they may have gone only to the cliff coals or to the seam 7 fathoms lower or even to the Blackclose, which could not be much deeper than 20 fathoms. But the latter supposition is not likely, and it is even less likely that they ever reached the High Main, which would be about 50 fathoms from the surface.

    92 At Cresswell there is a shallow syncline ; the coals at the top of the cliff near Snab Point are near the surface west of Cresswell, and, dipping south-eastwards, must pass out to sea on the north side of the village, underlying the sandstone at The Scars.

      The beds associated with the coals at Snab Point are stopped by a fault, which has been followed in the Yard Coal for about a mile. The throw is most likely to the south, but this has not yet been proved. To the south of the fault the rocks lie in a narrow syncline, the seaward beds at Headagee showing 25 ft. of bedded sandstone. This dips inland at 5° to 15°, increasing against the fault from 38° to vertical. Faults occur again at the southern end of the syncline, and also in vertical strata at The Quay. Between Headagee and The Quay is a broad outcrop of variegated sandstone, deep-red and pale-green, and associated reddish, micaceous, sandy shales. Between The Quay and Lyne Skears the dip is predominantly N.N.E. to N., as it is in the Yard Coal wrought 550 ft. below sea-level, between the mouth of the River Lyne and Lyne Cottage.

      Rock-sections end at the flat-lying sandstone of Lyne Skears. They reappear around Beacon Point, about a mile to the south, on the upthrow side of the New Moor Fault (see p. 77).

      Widdrington.—This section is bounded on the north by the Causey Park Dyke, and on the south by the Grange Wood Fault. It will be noted later that the Causey Park intrusion coincides with a fault of some magnitude, cutting off the area from the rich Broomhill field to the north.

      Comparatively little mining has been done, and for the most part in one seam only, the Widdrington Main, workings in which ceased more than 20 years ago. As regards strata below that coal, our only source of information is a deep boring  (76½ fathoms), situated between the Engine and Air shafts of the Isabella pit. Near the top was the Widdrington Main, 4 ft. 4 in. (top coal, 1 ft. 5 in. ; band, 1 in. ; coal, 2 ft. 10 in.), and less than 10 fathoms beneath were several coals, quite close together, but all less than 18 in. thick. Two other seams were then got, the lower being 2 ft. thick and about 25 fathoms below the Main Coal. This lower seam is believed to represent the Brockwell, and below were 35 fathoms of strata, mostly in sandstone, though there were two thin coals ; one was 18 fathoms below the Brockwell, and the other at the bottom of the bore.

      The Widdrington Main lies rather low down in the Coal Measures sequence, roughly midway between the Beaumont and the Brockwell Coals. It was mined from the Isabella and Sisters pits of Widdrington Colliery, near East Stead, about a mile west of Widdrington. In the former shaft the coal was 4 ft. 2 in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. 1 in.; band, 3 in.; coal, 2 ft. 10 in.) and lay only 16 fathoms from the surface; the outcrop was 310 yards to the 93west. The Sisters pit, less than half a mile east of the Isabella shaft, was somewhat deeper, and a 13-in, coal immediately under the surface clay is doubtless part of the Beaumont seam. In this pit the Widdrington Main Coal was 7 ft. 10 in. thick, as follows :—


Ft. In.
Coal 1 5
Band 2 5
Coal - 10
Band - 2
Coal 2 0
Seggar clay - 8
Coal - 4


     The Widdrington Main has been mined to its outcrop over quite a large area ; to the north workings terminated in cinder-coal against the Causey Park Dyke. A section in the seam about 250 yards north of the Sisters pit, near the eastern limit of the workings, was as follows :—


Ft. In.
Coal 0 10
Freestone 0
Coal 0 10
Post 2 1
Coal 1 11


     Occasionally the band is much thicker, as much as 4 ft. being recorded half a mile S.W. of North Steads. Conditions were still worse in a boring 600 yards west of this farm, for here the section was : top coal, 1 ft. 4 in. ; band, 6½ ft. ; bottom coal, 1 ft. 10 in. About 350 yards farther north the record was :-


Ft. In.
Coal, very good 2 1
Band 5 8
Coal 1 10


      To the south of Widdrington Colliery the seam has been wrought up to a small fault (3½ to 5½ fathoms down south) near the northern edge of Grange Wood. The general section of wrought coal in this direction shows : top coal, 2 ft. ; fireclay band, 9 to 12 in. ; bottom coal, 3 to 5 in. Along the eastern edge of the workings it was : top coal, 1 ft. 7 in. ; band, 12 in. ; lower coal, 3 in.

      The Widdrington Five-Quarter Coal lies only about 4 fathoms above the Widdrington Main. Possibly for that reason little mining has been done. In the Sisters pit it was 3 ft. 2 in. thick (top coal, 2 ft. 2 in. ; band, 7 in.; coal, 5 in.). It has been wrought only to a very small extent on either side of the shaft, and again about half a mile S.W. of North Steads, where a 4-fathom fault lets it down against the Widdrington Main.

      Small areas have been removed from this seam a little north of Grange Wood, but here the coal was only from 1 ft. 6 in. to 2 ft. thick. It has also been mined 500 yds. west of Dog Kennel, where the section was :—


Ft. In.
Splint coal 0 3
Coal 1 9
Band 0 9
Coal 0 2


     94 The Widdrington Yard Coal lies about 12 fathoms above the Widdrington Main, and 9 to 10 fathoms below the Beaumont. In the Sisters pit it was 2 ft. 9 in. thick, and 18½ fathoms from the surface. The outcrop must lie to the east of the Isabella pit, which starts in measures 5 to 6 fathoms lower. No mining seems to have been done north of the colliery, but it is highly probable that this was the seam got at 14 fathoms in a boring 750 yds. N.W. of North Steads. Here there was a good section-top coal, 2 ft. 8 in. ; ½ band, in. ; coal, 5½ in. It is doubtless the same seam, 2 ft. 8 in. thick, which was proved at 12 fathoms, about 250 yds. farther north, and again 2 ft. 4 in. thick near the Causey Park Dyke. The dyke has now been pierced about 400 yds. S.S.W. of Bullock's Hall, and subsequently an attempt made to work this seam. The coal, however, has not come up to expectation and, whilst 2 ft. 4 in. thick, does not appear to have been of good quality. The section was :—


Ft. In.
Sandstone panel - -
Blue shale,        1ft to..... 1 3
Top coal 0
Band 0
Coal 1
Band 0 2
Coal 0
Blackstone 1 0
Sandstone - -


      In the existing state of the mining industry it was not considered profitable to work the seam, which was abandoned after very little mining had been done. The Widdrington Yard has been tried S.E. of South Steads, being reached by a stone-mine from the Widdrington Main beneath. Here the coal varies in thickness, from 2 ft. 9 in. to 3 ft. 4 in. with two thin bands, as below :—


Ft. In.
Coal 0 6
Band 0 3
Coal 1 2
Band 0 3
Coal 0 8



     Workings stopped against the 3½-fathom fault, proved also in the Widdrington Main Coal.

      The Beaumont Coal has not been worked in this district to any serious extent. Towards the south the seam appears to have been reached from the Widdrington Yard, 11½ fathoms beneath, and is less than 2 ft. thick. North of Widdrington Colliery nothing definite is known about it.

      From the Widdrington pits eastwards to the sea is a somewhat featureless country, heavily drift-covered, save for the sandstone 95 outcrop on which the village of Widdrington is built. In this district of about 4 square miles practically no mining has been done, and our knowledge is derived entirely from the few borings that have been made from time to time. One of the earliest was carried out in 1874 by the Diamond Rock Boring Company. This, the 'Druridge Bay' bore, just south of Druridge farm, was carried to a depth of 260 fathoms. No coals of any value were recorded, but that was probably due to underestimation. More reliable results, at any rate down to the Brockwell Coal, were secured by the Hemscott Hill North bore (1925) by the Ashington Coal Company, 630 yards to the east-south-east, and by the Dunbar Burn bore to the north. Even so, the coals from the Beaumont to the Brockwell appear to be of little value, and it is doubtful if in this area they will ever prove of commercial importance. The former averaged no more than 1 ft. 8 in., and the latter 1 ft. 11 in., and at the depths at which they lie it is not considered likely that they will be mined until the coalfield is nearing exhaustion.

      In the Ashington Company's boring (Appendix I, p. 147), some shales intercalated in the 27 fathoms of sandstone between the Beaumont and the Plessey yielded a few specimens of non-marine lamellibranchs. This 'mussel-bed' is apparently very widespread, being known 9 fathoms or so above the Beaumont in the district to the south-west and south. In all three borings the seam thought to represent the Plessey Coal is disappointingly thin and poor. Such a condition was not unexpected, as in the adjacent Broomhill district to the north its probable equivalent, the Bottom Coal, is in an impoverished condition. The persistent Plessey 'shell-bed' was found in the Hemscott Hill North and the Dunbar Burn bores : in the former a 6-in. coal, several feet above the shell-bed,' improved in a northerly direction, and at Dunbar Burn was 2 ft. 9 in. thick (top coal, 3 in. ; shale, 2 in. ; coal, 2 ft. 4 in.). Still farther north, beyond Chibburn, a coal at this horizon is 4 ft. 5 in. thick ; its section (top coal, 1 ft. 2 in. ; fireclay, 6 in. ; coal, 2 ft. 9 in.) is not unlike that of the Main Coal of Broomhill. Five fathoms above it lies a seam with parting, as follows : coal, 2 ft. 6 in. ; fireclay and shale, 1 ft. 5 in. ; coal, 11 in. This is very like the section of the Broomhill Top Coal on the north side of the Causey Park Dyke, between Link House and East Chevington:


example 500 yards S. by E. East Chevington.       example of 300 yards S. by W. of Link House.    
  Ft. In.     Ft. In.
Coal 3 6   Coal 2 9
Band 1 2   Band 0 10½
Coal 1 6   Coal 0


     Whether the parting increases towards the Dunbar Burn bore is uncertain, but at any rate there are two coals near the top of the boring, the lower of which may well be the Top Coal of Broomhill as wrought near Link House.


     96 Higher coals not present at Dunbar Burn outcrop to the southeast ; they were cut in the Druridge Bay bore, and in the Hemscott Hill North bore 630 yards to the east-south-east. In the latter the seams 2 ft. 7 in. and 1 ft. 2½ in., at 30 and 33 fathoms respectively may be the equivalents of the Queen and Little Wonder Coals at Broomhill.

      The Yard Coal was 6 ft. 8 in. thick (including bands) in the Hemscott Hill North boring on the coast north of the Grange Wood Fault ; probably this is the seam cut near the top of the Druridge Bay bore. A white, medium-grained, quartzose sandstone, 12 fathoms thick, underlies the coal, as in the country to the south ; this sandstone is one of the most persistent in the Ashington field.

     The Main Coal, in several divisions, lies at the top of the Hemscott Hill North boring, being brought up by the Grange Wood Fault. The top portion is 6 ft. 3 in. thick, with several bands, as follows :—


Ft. In.
Blackstone 0 2
Coal 2 7
Seggar 1
Coal 0 6
Dark seggar 0 9
Coal 1


      Seven feet lower is a second seam, 3 ft. 2 in. thick (top coal, 1 ft. 5 in. ; dark seggar, 4 in. ; coal, 1 ft. 5 in.) and 7 ft. lower still is a third coal (2 ft. 10 in., with bands). Such a complex assemblage seems to be a general character of the seam, though occasionally, as in the Cresswell district, the coals unite to form a bed over 10 ft. thick. The outcrop most probably strikes north-eastwards from the Grange Wood Fault, passing out to sea too quickly to allow of any mining to be done.

      In conclusion, it would, seem that between the outcrop of the Widdrington Main Coal and the railway to the west, there may be an area of Brockwell Coal which offers distinct possibilities for a land-sale colliery. The seam lies at no great depth, and whilst it could not be expected to average more than 2 ft. in thickness, there are good reasons for expecting a marked thickening towards the outcrop.

      As already noted, the Widdrington Main has been practically exhausted from its outcrop eastwards to where it either thins out or becomes too full of bands. Little can be expected from this seam beyond its worked limits. More promising, however, is the Widdrington Yard, especially north of the Widdrington Sisters pit. In this shaft the coal was 2 ft. 9 in. thick (top coal, 9 in. ; band, 6 in. ; coal, 1 ft. 6 in.) and N.W. of North Steads a seam 2 ft. 6 in. to 3 ft. 2 in., thought to be the same coal, has been proved in several borings. 97 If this be so there should be a workable area between the Sisters pit and the Causey Park Dyke. In view, however, of the recent attempt to work this seam near the Causey Park Dyke, about 400 yards S.S.W. of Bullock's Hall (see p. 94), mining may well have to be deferred until more prosperous times.

      Nothing definite is known of the Beaumont hereabouts. Where coals, thought to be at this horizon, have been found in borings they have never appeared to be of any value.

      The lower coals do not seem to be of any importance east of Steads Burn, as several deep borings, between the Widdrington-Whitefield House road and the mouth of the Chevington Burn, proved these seams entirely absent or very thin. In this respect these measures are as barren of workable coals as are the strata, thought to be at the same horizon, in the Link House district north of the Causey Park Dyke (see p. 99).

      The only workings east of Widdrington Colliery seem to be those in a coal which outcrops ,on the west side of Widdrington village. The seam is said to have been 6 ft. thick, and is most likely the equivalent of the coal 4 ft 5 in. thick, at 22 fathoms, in a boring ¾ mile N.E. of Chibburn. How far from this boring the coal would be in workable condition is uncertain, but a seam apparently on this horizon was 2 ft. 9 in. thick in the Dunbar Burn bore, about mile to the south.

      Towards the south-east, around Druridge, the higher coals pass out to sea too quickly to be of much practical account.

      Broomhill and Hauxley .—This valuable coalfield is the most northerly in the Coal Measures of Northumberland and Durham. It is bounded on the north by the Hauxley Fault, and on the south by a parallel displacement along the line of the Causey Park Dyke ; very probably the southern boundary-fault increases towards the east, as the Hauxley one certainly does.

      In general, the strata within this great trough begin on the west with a gentle seaward dip, but this is soon modified by a pronounced swing-round towards the boundary faults, as these approach the coast. All the eastern half of the field, indeed, may be regarded as a broad anticline with E.-W. axis. The Bondicarr Fault is the only serious displacement within the area, and, like the others, rapidly increases seawards.

       With relatively barren country on either side, the field is so isolated that it has developed a seam-nomenclature of its own, quite unrelated to the rest of the county.

      Inland there is a widespread covering of glacial clays, sands and gravels, from 10 to 25 fathoms thick, and only along the coast can the underlying rocks be studied to advantage. Even here there are many gaps, so that mining information is our chief guide ; it gives us a thorough knowledge of the sequence in the 98 Productive Coal Measures, and many of the coal-outcrops can be inserted with precision. In the course of the re-survey several fossiliferous horizons have been noted, and will be referred to in due course.

      Mining began centuries ago, and for the last hundred years has been on an intensive scale. Two considerable pits are still active, Broomhill in the west and Hauxley (sunk in 1923) in the east ; their joint annual output is about 520,000 tons.

      The earliest workings appear to have been in the neighbourhood of Coal Houses, between Broomhill and Acklington. Hereabouts mining would be fairly easy, as rock comes practically to the surface and the coals are at no great depth. Quite possibly workings both in the Bottom and Main Coals date from the opening up of a quarry in the Acklington Dyke, against which both seams outcrop ; the quarry is very old, and is now completely grassed over. Later there would appear to have been some small pits west of the modern ones, and mining began in earnest when the first of the Broomhill shafts was sunk in 1849. From this and from others of later date most of the output has been derived.

      The total thickness of Coal Measures in this region is about 1,320 feet, the productive beds being in the middle third. There are seven workable seams, and these are all steam coals with no commercial distinction between them. The general sequence is as follows :—



Ft. In.
Measures with several coals 540 0
RADCLIFFE COAL, 5 ft. 6 in to... 7 6
Measures, mostly sandstone with a 2½-ft. coal 80 to.. 120 0
ALBERT COAL, 4 ft. 2 in. to... 7 0
Measures, mostly sandstone, 75 ft. to 100 0
QUEEN COAL, 2 ft. 10 in. to 4 0
Sandstones and shales 24 0
LITTLE WONDER COAL, 1 ft. to 2 9
Measures 60 0
TOP or PRINCESS COAL, 3 ft. to 6 0
Measures, 30 ft. to 80 0
MAIN or DUKE COAL, 2 ft. 6 in. to 6 0
Measures 48 0
BOTTOM COAL, 1 ft. to in. to 3 0
Measures with several coals (unworkable over
most of the area)
360 0


      As local nomenclature sometimes changes even within this comparatively small area, it is as well, before details are considered, to bear in mind the locations of the subsidiary fields. First of all we have the two south of the Bondicarr Fault, namely Broomhill itself on the west, and Newburgh (now disused) near the coast.

      North of the Fault we have the old Togston shafts and Radcliffe Colliery (now disused) to the west, and the Hauxley shaft near the sea.

      The Bottom Coal is known as such everywhere, save perhaps at Radcliffe, where in old days it was sometimes called the Yard. The Top and Main of Broomhill are known as the Princess and Duke Coals at Newburgh, Radcliffe and Hauxley.

      (a) Broomhill.—The Bottom Coal is usually from 2½ to 3 ft. thick, and is a fairly hard, rather splinty coal, never quite so good as either the Main or Top seams. West of the Broomhill-Red Row road it usually shows : top coal, 2 to 8 in. ; band, 1 to I in. ; lower coal, 2 ft. 8 in. thick ; the band parting is constant over a large area. Between the Broomhill pit and the outcrop west of Coal House the seam has been entirely wrought out ; the inclination was low (2½° almost due east), and the general section was : coal, 2 in. ; band, 1 in. ; coal, 2 ft. In the old workings west of the road from Broomhill to Red Row it was rather better, averaging 3 ft. with the usual thin band near the top. To the west of Red Row there is an area still intact : a recent boring proved the seam 3 ft. 5 in. at 10 fathoms below the Main, and as it can easily be reached by cross-cut  from the latter seam it is more than likely that this district will soon be opened up. East of the Broomhill-Red Row road attenuation sets in, and so far the coal has not been wrought farther east than Hadstone, where the section was 2 ft. 2 in. thick (coal, 4 in. ; band, 3½ in. ; coal, 1 ft. 6½ in.). Much the same appears between Red Row and East Chevington, where the section was : coal, 2 in. ; band, 5
n.; coal, 20 in.—in all, 2 ft. 3 in. This easterly deterioration would seem to be progressive. Many years ago, near Link House, a staple was sunk from the Main to the Bottom Coal : the latter was so full of bands as to be quite worthless, the details being :-


Ft. In.
Coal 0 4
Stone 0 4
Splint coal 0 8
Band 0 4
Coal 0 9
Total  2 5


      To the north of Link House a recent boring was carried 53 fathoms below the Main Coal without encountering any workable seam, the Bottom Coal being represented by a foot of coal and blackstone. It is more than doubtful therefore if there will be anything of workable thickness east of a N. and S. line through Hadstone.

     To the south, beyond the area of the Broomhill royalty, a small area of Bottom Coal was worked at Bullock's Hall Colliery, vhere it was called the Low Main. The seam was entirely wrought out between its outcrop and the Causey Park Dyke, which ended the workings to the south with a face of burnt coal nearly three-quarters of a mile long. Another seam (1 ft. 7 in. thick), 3 fathoms Below the Bottom Coal, was known as the Cheeveley Coal in the Broomhill country also this coal was found to be universally present 2 fathoms or so below the Bottom Coal.

 100 Between the Bottom and the next higher seam, the Main Coal, there are generally about 6 to 7 fathoms of shale with ironstone nodules, rising occasionally to 10 fathoms. Near the base of this, and therefore not far above the Bottom Coal, a 'mussel-bed' is known throughout the district. Sometimes the shells are no more than a few feet above the coal, at others 3 to 4 fathoms above. In one boring (Coulson's No. 4, 1931) there were separate 'shell-beds' 7 fathoms apart, one a few feet above the Bottom Coal and a second 3 fathoms below the Main. The shells are for the most part those of estuarine or freshwater lamellibranchs belonging to the genera Carbonicola and Naiadites, with a scattering of ostracods and an occasional Spirorbis. The following were got in borings and workings at Broomhill above the Bottom Coal :— Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.) sensu lato, C. cf. aquilina, C. cf. acuta (J. de C. Sow.), C. sp., C. sp. probably C. nucularis Hind, Naiadites modiolaris (j. de C. Sow.) in abundance, N. cf. quadrata (J. de C. Sow.), Spirorbis pusillus (Mart.), and ostracods. To the above may be added two plants, Neuropteris gigantea Sternb. and Calamites sachsei Stur.

      The Main Coal, one of the thickest and best of the series, has been extensively wrought throughout the district. It is a very good steam coal and, along with the Top seam above, might be reckoned the best in the Broomhill area. In the Broomhill 'A'  pit it was 5 ft. 6 in. thick at 35 fathoms from the surface, whilst to the south it occasionally reached as high as 6 ft. 3 in. As with the Top and Bottom Coals, it is towards the west that the Main is at its best as regards thickness, quality and freedom from bands. About 100 years ago it was being wrought at the old Acklington pit near Coal Houses, and a thick sandstone overlying the coal was worked at a nearby quarry.

     The Main Coal has been almost exhausted between its outcrop and the coast ; there are no undersea workings, for near the shore the seam is only 200 feet from the surface. The seam is practically flat between Broomhill and Low Coldrife, but between Link House and East Chevington the dip is S.E. at a low angle. It is singularly free from faults, a remark which applies equally to all the coals lying between the Bondicarr Fault and the Causey Park Dyke. The few known are in the Red Row district, where the largest (half a mile W. of Red Row) has a throw to the south of between 8 and 10 fathoms, giving a small additional area of coal west of the main outcrop ; here the coal is of good quality, 5 ft. 6 in. thick, and entirely free from bands. The dip in this southwestern corner is about 4½° to the north-east, and for a considerable distance towards its outcrop the coal is covered by glacial gravels. Levels taken close to the outcrop show that these gravels must be between 18 and 20 fathoms thick quite possibly they represent the infilling of a pre-Glacial valley.

   101 Eastwards the Main is split by a band parting around High Coldrife this amounts to only a few inches, an average section being :—


Ft. In.
Grey coal 0 4
Coal 2 3
Band 0 3
Coal 2 2
Total 5 0


Southwards towards Link House the band increases to 15½ inches, and a section south of Link House reads :—


Ft. In.
Grey coal 0 2
Coal 1 10
Band 1
Coal 1 7
Total 4 10½


      A local interruption, attended by the loss of much good coal, is due to a rock wash-out ' resulting from contemporaneous erosion. This begins a little south of Broomhill 'A' pit, and broadens in a N.N.E. direction until in one place it is more than half a mile wide. Within the wash-out ' area are several islands of solid coal up to 10 feet thick. Such occurrences are not uncommon elsewhere, and are usually ascribed to local accumulations piled up by the stream which tore its way through the original bed.

      The strata from the Main up to the Top Coal are mostly sandstones and sandy shales. They vary much in thickness; a maximum of 131 fathoms is found around the Broomhill shafts, but elsewhere the average is from 6 to 8 fathoms. Towards the sea this decreases to between 5 and 6 fathoms, while in one place, between High and Low Coldrife, there was only 1 ft. 6 in. of rock between the two seams. As previously mentioned, a thick sandstone overlies the Main Coal near its outcrop at Coal Houses, and has been worked at a nearby quarry ; this sandstone is over 60 feet thick in the Broomhill 'A' pit, but in one of the Acklington pits to the west it had given place to shales, with a shell-bed ' about 12 inches above the Main Coal. Thick shales were also noted above the seam in the workings west of Red Row, and in Bullock's Hall Colliery shales with a shell-bed ' were said to overlie the coal.

       The Top Coal is a thick seam of excellent quality, which in the past was a leading feature in the local output. Like the Bottom and Main Coals it is at its best around Broomhill, where its average thickness is about 6 feet, rising occasionally to as much as 9 feet. The following are sections in the Broomhill A ' and 'B' pits  :—



'A' pit Ft. In.   'B' pit Ft. In.
Coal, coarse 1 6   Coal 1 6
Band 0 6   Seggar 0 8
Coal 4 0   Coal 4 0
Total 6 0   Total 6 2


    102  In the field south of 'A' pit the coal was very thick, the section being :—


Ft. In.
Coal, coarse 1 3
Band 0 6
Coal 0 2
Band 0
Coal, with thin partings 7
Total 9 6


whilst farther south at South Broomhill the section read :—


Ft. In.
Coal 1 10½
Metal and coal 0 5
Coal 4 9
Total 7


       The seam would thus appear to be at a maximum from the Broomhill-Red Row road westwards to the outcrop, although over a large area to the east the thickness seldom drops below 5 feet. As might be expected, workings in this coal are of very old date, and the seam is practically exhausted from its outcrop to the sea-board. High-water mark is the extreme easterly limit of the Broomhill workings. There is no undersea mining in the Top Coal, as along the shore-line the seam is only about 170 feet below sea-level, and the minimum of cover required in this area for undersea working is 240 feet. To the south-east, near Link House, the seam appears to have changed considerably from its Broomhill development. A boring here proved a coal (unknown to the west), 2 ft 5 in. with bands, at 5½ fathoms above the Top Coal. The latter was 3 ft. 1 in. thick (top coal, 2 ft. ; blaes, 7 in. ; bottom coal, 6) in.), a somewhat similar condition to that proved in the workings 100 yards to the east, where the section was : coal, 2 ft. 5 in. ; band 10 in. ; bottom coal 10 in.

      About half a mile south of Link House workings in the Top Coal were stopped against the Causey Park Dyke ; a 'cross-cut' in the coal proved 38 feet of 'burnt coal,' and went on through 24 feet of whin, in which it finished. From this point the dyke forms the southern limit as far as Whitefield House, west of which 'bad coal' was encountered and the workings abandoned. The main outcrop is probably not far west of this, as a boring 200 yards S.W. of Whitefield House proved 23½ fathoms of sand and clay without reaching rock-head. There is, however, a narrow, elongated strip lying close to the dyke and extending westwards for about a mile, recently found near Bullock's Hall. The discovery of this seam is not without interest. As already mentioned, the Bottom and Main Coals of Broomhill had been mined in the small colliery at Bullock's Hall, the workings being stopped to the 103south by the Causey Park Dyke. To the south of the dyke a 28-in. coal had been proved in a boring, and a mine was begun to the north of the whin intrusion, the intention being to drive through the whin to this coal. Quite unexpectedly a coal was encountered before the whin was reached, and proved to be 6½ feet thick and of excellent. quality. The amount of coal was very limited, as the surface deposits thicken rapidly north and east, accounting for the absence of the seam in the nearby Bullock's Hall pit ; its preservation here seems to be due to the existence of a small isolated knoll of rock on which the surface deposits are very thin. The section of the coal and overlying beds was :—


Ft. In.
'Shell-bed' 0 3
Clay-ironstone band 0 1
Black shales 0 2
Clay-ironstone band 0 1½
Soft shales 0 10
Coal 1 3
Band 0 2
Coal 0 7½
Shale with thin coal threads 0 5½
Coal 4 0


      The seam was burnt for about 15 yards next to the dyke, but elsewhere was quite normal. It is unquestionably the Top Coal of Broomhill, and was all the more unexpected as the nearest known occurrence of this seam is at Whitefield House, about a mile to the east, where the glacial covering is more than 25 fathoms.

     The 'shell-bed' noted above the coal in the last section appears to be fairly widespread. It was proved in the sinking of the Broomhill pits, and also in the old Togston shafts, so that it has a lateral extension of over 2½ miles. The following have been recorded from various localities above the Top Coal in the Broomhill district :— Anthracomya ?, Carbonicola cf. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. aff. pseudacuta Trueman, C. sp. [cf. C. decorata Trueman], Naiadites sp., N. modiolaris (J. de C. Sow.), N. cf. quadratus (J. de C. Sow.), Spirorbis pusillus (Mart.), and ostracods.

      The measures, usually about 12 fathoms thick, between the Top Coal and the seam above—the Queen Coal—do not call for any special detailed description. They are generally shales with clay-ironstone bands ; sometimes sandy shales and shaly sandstones predominate. Near the top lies a thin seam, the Little Wonder, about 4 fathoms below the Queen Coal. So far this has only been worked over a very small area around South Broomhill, not far from its outcrop, where it is about 2½ ft. thick but rather shaly. Elsewhere the coal seems to be much thinner, 18 inches being about the average thickness. A 'shell-bed' found at several localities above the coal yielded Carbonicola and Naiadites.

      The Queen Coal is not so good as either the Top or Main Coals. Hitherto it has not been much worked, but with the fast diminishing areas of the lower seams It is now being opened up. 104 As the outcrop lies east of the Broomhill shafts access is got by 'drifts,' both from the surface and from the underlying seams. The coal is rather flat in this area and in places very near the surface, so that its outcrop is much influenced by glacial scour. The outcrop takes a wide sweep eastwards towards High Coldrife and then turns southwards in a very irregular manner. About three-quarters of a mile south of High Coldrife it is against sand, and from here must run towards the west, as the seam was proved in borings at South Broomhill and Red Row ; at the former place it was found about 18 feet and at the latter 6 feet below the clay. To the south of Red Row the surface deposits thicken considerably ; at the bridge over Chevington Burn they are 13½ fathoms thick, and the Queen Coal is cut out. It is more than likely that the outcrop runs a considerable distance from Red Row in an east-south-easterly direction, until stopped at the Causey Park Dyke.
Throughout the area the Queen Coal is composed of an upper bright coal and a lower splint coal, and as the latter has to be kept separate the seam is thus rather troublesome to work. The top bright coal varies in thickness, but usually lies between 2 ft. 4 in. and 2 ft. 10 in. ; the splint coal varies between 10 and 16 in. The dip is for the most part at a low angle and generally in an easterly or south-easterly direction.

      The Queen Coal is separated from the Albert Coal by a rather coarse sandstone, usually about 15 fathoms thick, which is one of the most persistent beds among the Productive Measures of this region.

     (b) Newburgh:— The northern boundary of the Broomhill workings runs out to sea a few hundred yards north of Low Coldrife, and from here up to the Bondicarr Fault several coals have been wrought from Newburgh Colliery, now disused. The ground is on the north flank of the Broomhill anticline, and the dip increases to as much as 14°, so that several of the coals, including the Radcliffe and Albert, are higher in the sequence than anything in the Broomhill field sensu stricto.

      Newburgh Colliery shaft reached the Princess Coal (Top Coal of Broomhill) at 80 fathoms. A bore carried the record down to 110 fathoms without revealing anything of consequence. The lowest seam wrought hereabouts, a representative of the Main Coal of Broomhill (here known as the Duke), was subsequently wrought by means of a 'cross-cut' from the Princess seam. The Duke varied in thickness between 2 ft. 4 in. and 2 ft. 8 in., and has been wrought along the sea-board.

      The Princess (or Top Coal of Broomhill) was 6 ft. 3 in. thick at Newburgh, the section being :—


Ft. In.
Coal 0 5
Band 0 8
Coal 0 11
Band 0 6
Coal 3 9


  105 The dip was relatively high (14° to N.), but the workings were extensive, being carried up to the Acklington Dyke for about a mile under the sea, as also were those in the Queen Coal above.

      On the coast the low reef known as Hadstone Carrs probably intervenes between the Queen and Albert Coals, the latter a 5-ft. seam cut in the Newburgh shaft at 50 fathoms (coal, 3 ft. 3 in. ; band, 3 in. ; coal, 1 ft. 6 in.). The Albert was a good steam coal, though rather high in ash, and never so good as the Radcliffe, 18 fathoms above ; in both seams workings were continuous from the outcrop near Low Hall to just beyond the shaft.

      The Radcliffe at Newburgh was a hard, fairly good steam coal, 6 ft. thick, with a 9-in cannel rib on top. It was only 30 fathoms down in the shaft, around which it was mined over a very small area. It was 6½ ft. thick at 23 fathoms in a boring at the seaward end of one of the reefs at Bondi Carrs. An outcrop was seen on the shore near Elm Bush when the original survey was made by Topley ; on his maps the cannel rib is recorded as 'splint coal 6 inches, on coal 6 feet.'

      Two coals near the top of the Newburgh shaft were wrought on the shore north of Elm Bush. The lower, 2 ft. 3 in. thick, is separated from the Radcliffe by 8 fathoms of strata, and associated shales contained the following fossils :—Anthracomya sp., Carbonicola cf. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. cf. concinna W. B. Wright, C. cf. subconstricta (J. Sow.), C. phrygiana W. B. Wright. The upper coal, 2 ft. 4 in. thick, lies 30 feet higher and the overlying shale yielded :—Anthracomya cf. polita Trueman, Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. cf. carissima W. B. Wright, C. cf. concinna W. B. Wright, C. cf. phrygiana W. B. Wright, C. cf. subconstricta (J. Sow.), C. cf. turgida (Brown), C. sp., Naiadites cf. quadrata (j. de C. Sow.), N. cf. triangularis (J. de C. Sow.), Rhizodopsis sauroides (Will.) and the plants, Neuropteris gigantea Sternb., Calarnites suckowi Brongn. and Stigmaria ficoides (Sternb.).

      The change in the direction of the strike of the measures is well shown on the shore hereabouts. Near high-water mark it is E.N.E., changing seawards to E.S.E. ; the dip is northerly, at about 12°.

      Amongst overlying strata, outcropping on the beach at Bondi Carrs, are two more coals ; the lower one, 12 in. thick, is probably the equivalent of the 6-in. seam 4½ fathoms below rock-head in the Newburgh shaft ; the higher was cut 12 feet below rock-head in a boring 110 yards north of the pit, where it was 2 ft. 2 in. thick. On the shore it was much more (3½ to 5 ft.), as it also was in borings around Hauxley. Some distance to the north of this coal outcrop the sequence is broken by the Bondicarr Fault, here 75 fathoms down south. This disturbance is parallel to the strike of the rocks in this region, but it cannot be located  on the foreshore, where, however, there are many gaps. 107 Its position is inferred from the local workings, and from a boring 300 yards N.N.W. of Bondicarr farm.

      Before ending the account of the Broomhill field it is as well to give a résumé of certain explorations which have been made amongst the lowest measures, below the Bottom Coal. It will be remembered that one of the coals therein, the Widdrington Main, had been wrought right up to the Causey Park Dyke from the south (p. 93). A coal, quite possibly its equivalent, was got 3 ft. 9 in. thick, on the north or Broomhill side of the Dyke, in Winter's No. 4 bore (C, Fig. 4). In August, 1930, the Broomhill Company began a series of bores to test the development of this and neighbouring seams. The results are set forth diagrammatically in Fig. 4. A state of affairs is revealed which is somewhat similar to that found amongst the higher and better known measures. There is a serious deterioration of the coals towards the east, and one bore, Coulson's No. 5 (D, Fig. 4), suggests that the impoverishment, in a lesser degree, may extend to the north also. Apparently the Widdrington Main will not be workable north of Woodside, nor any of the coals east of a line drawn southwards through Broomhill Colliery.

      During the war a trial was made in the Given's seam at Broomhill, but the coal proved to be poor and dirty ; it may be thicker towards the outcrop, as it is around Winter's No. 4 bore (C, Fig. 4). The Brockwell Coal may also thicken, although this (or a coal thought to be in that position) was only 19 in. in a bore about three-quarters of a mile west of Maiden's Hall.

      At the extreme south-west end of the field there are traces of very old workings, and on Topley's original six-inch field slip we have the following note on the section at Eshott Colliery :—


Ft. In.
Post 30 0
Coal 2 6
Post 8 0
Coal 4 0
Strata 21 0
Coal 2 0


      Unfortunately the exact site of this pit is not known. The 2-ft. coal at the bottom may be the Brockwell, and general confirmation of the sequence is afforded by Coulson's No. 1 bore (A, Fig. 4), a little less than three-quarters of a mile to the N.N.E. These old workings at Eshott were probably not very extensive, and the country eastwards towards West Chevington and Woodside may well be worth careful exploration.



Fig 4

Broomhill Coal Bores


Fig 4. Bore Sections of the Lower part of the Coal Measures around Broomhill,
showing easterly thinning.


      Cores were got in the Coulson borings, and from them fossils were obtained at several horizons. Plant impressions were found throughout, but were all of common species, such as Alethopteris lonchitica above the Brockwell in Nos. 1 and 4 bores. 108 There were entomostraca and a few fragments of Lingula in the roof of the 3 ft. 11 in. coal (coal, 1 ft. 6 in.; shale, 1 ft. 6 in. ; coal, 1 ft.) at 19½ fathoms in No. 5 bore, but the chief discovery was the 'shell-bed' under the Bottom Coal in Nos. 3 and 4 bores. This yielded Naiadites cf. modiolaris (J. de C. Sow.), N. cf. quadrata (J. de C. Sow.), N. sp., Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.) sensu lato, C. sp., Spirorbis pusillus (Mart.) fish-remains, and (on a separate bedding-plane) Lingula mytiloides J. Sow.

     (c) Hauxley, Radcliffe and Togston Barns.—This valuable area, still productive, lies between the Bondicarr and Hauxley Faults.

      Boulder-clay as usual covers most of the ground, although it is never so thick as in the district to the south, seldom being more than 30 feet and often under 12 feet.

      Rock is seen in the railway-cutting at Togston Barns, and here and there around Hauxley, where the glacial deposits are very thin. Otherwise the only exposures are on the foreshore, between Silver Carrs and Hauxley Haven. The general dip is northerly, except towards the west around Togston Barns, where the measures incline to the north-east. The seams are in good state, and much mining has been done, some of very old date.

      The Radcliffe shaft (now disused) was sunk in 1893, and got most of the coal, cutting all the seams from the Radcliffe down to the Duke (Main of Broomhill) at 80 fathoms. A considerable area towards the coast still remained, and this was first explored by means of a level 'cross-cut,' (the 'Hauxley Drift') driven northwards from the Newburgh shaft, right through the Bondicarr Fault and on to the Hauxley Fault beyond. This considerable undertaking the drift was nearly a mile long—opened up all the seams, from well below the Bottom Coal up to the Radcliffe. They dipped steadily northwards, the inclination varying from 4° to 14°. Nevertheless the drift was not used to any extent, and when Newburgh was abandoned a readier access was got from the new Hauxley shaft, sunk in 1923. This goes down to the level of the Radcliffe Coal (on the south side of the Hauxley Fault), from which an inclined drift has been driven southwards, cutting the Albert, Queen, Little Wonder and Princess Coals, the latter at 95 fathoms below ground. From these workings the present output is derived.

      The Bottom Coal is a somewhat erratic subject. It has its normal thickness of 3 ft. in the old pits near Togston Barns, and in the old colliery by the side of the railway east of Togston. Eastwards, however, it deteriorates, just as it does in the Broomhill field. In the Hauxley Drift it was 2 ft. 7 in. thick, but in workings there it soon dwindled to 1 ft. 6 in., and again was only 1 ft. 7 in. in a bore from the bottom of the Radcliffe pit. The following shells were collected from the shales above the Bottom Coal in this district :— 109 Anthracomya sp., Carbonicola cf. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. aff. aquilina (tending towards C. retrotracta W. B. Wright), C. cf. regularis Trueman, Naiadites cf. modiolaris (J. de C. Sow.), N. producta (Brown), Spirorbis sp.

      The Duke Coal of Radcliffe (Main of Broomhill) has been wrought a good deal at the Radcliffe pit. It was here 2 ft. 10 in. thick, a steam coal of good quality and repute. Most of the workings seem to have extended south and east. About 800 yards south of the pit the Acklington Dyke was struck and found to be 30 feet wide, while to the south-east the workings stopped near Low Hauxley at a fault 8½ fathoms down N.E. No coal seems to have been won north of the shaft, possibly because exploratory drifts in this direction, 400 yards east of the shaft, found the seam to be only 2 ft. 2 in. thick. Between Togston Barns and Togston the dip is about 12°. The coal must outcrop close to the main road south of Togston, as a boring on the roadside found it at 8½ fathoms, the top 3 fathoms being boulder-clay. There are many dayfalls in the field alongside the road. To the north the workings stopped at a fault, 40 fathoms down south, proved in the old pit (North Togston Colliery) alongside the railway east of Togston. To the south the outcrop probably runs in a southwesterly direction, for a boring about 600 yards west of Togston Barns proved the Top Coal at 5 fathoms, and the Main, 4 ft. 2 in., at 14 fathoms. South of this boring the Main Coal would appear to be stopped by a fault, but this seems to die out to the east, as there is no appreciable interruption in the workings between Broomhill and Togston Barns. Westwards, however, it may increase its throw rapidly, as the outcrop is shifted about three-quarters of a mile to the west, being at one time visible in the whin quarry near Coal Houses. Hereabouts several N.W.-S.E. faults, of unknown throw, tend to obscure the structure. In the North Togston pit the Duke (or Main) Coal was found 5 ft. 10 in. thick. at 84 fathoms ; the royalty being small, not much coal was available, while the dip rose to 15°. There might still be an appreciable area still intact between this pit and the extreme western workings of the Radcliffe pit and the Hauxley Fault. At present it is being wrought from the Hauxley shaft on either side of the Hauxley Drift, and southwards towards Bondicarr farm.

      The Princess Coal (Top Coal of Broomhill) was fairly thick in the old Radcliffe pit, 6 ft. 7 in. in all (top coal, 6 in. ; blackstone, 9 in.; coal, 5 ft. 4 in.). Apparently it was there by far the best coal of the series, and the workings were extensive. At present it is being wrought from the Hauxley shaft, and there is a considerable thinning eastward between the Radcliffe pit and Low Hauxley, as a recent boring (August, 1931) at the latter place cut the coal, 3 ft. 5 in. thick, at 55 fathoms ; the section was : top coal, 1 in. ; shale, 8½ in. ; coal, 2 ft. 7 in. About 4 fathoms higher was a 15-in. seam, covered by shales which yielded many species of Carbonicola, including C. aff. concinna W. B. Wright, 110 C. cf. concinna W. B. Wright, C. cf. carissima W. B. Wright, C. aff. turgida (Brown), C. aff. similis (Brown) along with Spirorbis pusillus (Mart.) and fragments of Naiadites.

      The shales above the Princess Coal in the present workings at Hauxley Colliery yielded a fine collection of fossil plants, of which the following were identified :—Alethopteris decurrens (Artis), A. lonchitica (Schloth.), Diplotmema furcatum Brongn., Mariopteris herta (Stur.), M. cf. daviesi Kidston, M. muricata (Schloth.), M. nervosa (Brongn.), Neuropteris gigantea Sternb., N. heterophylla Brongn., Renaultia gracilis (Brongn.), Sphenopteris trifoliata (Artis) S. sp., Annularia radiata Brongn., Asterophyllites longifolius Sternb., Calamites cisti Brongn., C. suckowi Brongn., Lepidodendron obovatum Sternb., L. lycopodioides Sternb., Lepidostrobus sp., Stigmaria ficoides, Sternb., Trigonocarpus parkinsoni Brongn.

      A few remains of estuarine lamellibranchs, with Spirorbis and fish-remains, were also observed ; shells are fairly common at this position elsewhere, but nowhere are plant-remains so numerous.

      The coal is also being wrought north-west of Togston Farm (Togston East Farm on the six-in, map), being approached from the Queen Coal on the south side of the Bondicarr Fault, where the throw has diminished to 19 fathoms. In the workings from the south the Acklington Dyke was recently struck, with burnt coal
on either side, so that no faulting accompanies the intrusion at this point (500 yards N.W. of Togston Farm). The whin was 26 feet thick ; alongside its southern edge the 'burnt coal' was 26 feet wide, and on the north 22 feet.

      In the old pit by the railway, about 400 yards S.W. of Togston Barns, the Top Coal was 7 ft. 6 in. thick, as follows :


Ft. In.
Coal, good 
Metal band 
Coal, good 
Coal, splint, good  10 


and in the air-shaft 200 yards to the W.N.W. the coal was 5 ft. 6 in. (coal, splint, 1 ft. ; blue metal, 6 in. ; coal, 4 ft.). In this shaft the coal was struck at 10 fathoms, the top 10 feet being in clay. In a boring about 230 yards to the W.N.W. of the air-shaft the seam was 4 ft. 11 in. thick and only 13½ ft. below rock-head. In both shafts a 'mussel-bed' is recorded immediately above the coal, as at Broomhill 'B' pit, and at Bullock's Hall. The coal dips about 1 in 10 (6°), between the shafts and the North Togston pit, where it was 5½ feet thick at 72 fathoms from the surface ; here the dip increases to 15° due north, and the workings were limited north and west of the shaft by a 40-fathom fault, which runs E.N.E.-W.S.W. between the shaft and Togston.

      The Queen Coal hereabouts was 5½ feet thick at 60 fathoms ; apparently some remains intact.111 In the Radcliffe workings the  section was : coal, 2 ft. 11 in. ; splint, 1 ft. 2 in. About a mile farther east, near Low Hauxley, the coal was 2 ft. 10 in. thick (coal, 2 ft. 3 in., splint, 7 in.). Between North Togston Colliery and Radcliffe the measures strike approximately east and west; the dip, almost due north, changes from 15° at North Togston (where the beds are close to a 40-fathom fault), to 6° at Radcliffe. From here to Hauxley there is an increase to 14° as the Hauxley Fault is approached.

      West of Togston Barns there are some 'dayfalls' in the fields and the coal outcrops near by, as it also does under the surface deposits at the pit by the railway, a little south-west of Togston Barns. The sandstone invariably present above the coal is seen in the railway-cutting at Togston Barns, where the base is coarse and the upper beds have weathered to sand. In the cutting the bed seems very gently inclined, so that the steep dip of 15° in the pit (North Togston Colliery), half a mile or so northwards along the railway, must set in fairly rapidly. In this pit the sandstone is almost 20 fathoms thick ; it is 18½ fathoms in the old Radcliffe pit, but about a mile farther east, at Low Hauxley, the upper half is replaced by shale over a 9-in. coal, the whole sequence amounting to little more than 11 fathoms.

      The Albert Coal was 7 ft. thick, but of poor quality, at North Togston Colliery (where the workings were restricted by the limited royalty), and 4 ft. 7 in. at the old Radcliffe pit. At the latter place the coal was wrought mostly to the east of the Amble road, where the seam varied between 4 ft. 2 in. and 4 ft. 9 in., the average section being : coal, 3 ft. ; band, 5 in. ; coal, 1 ft. 1 in. A more detailed section, from a recent boring at Low Hauxley, gives it as 5 ft. 4 in., as follows :—


Ft. In.
Dark shale 
Blackstone with coal threads 
Coal  10 
Splint and coal 

      In the 4 inches of dark shale separating the two top leaves of the seam some fairly large estuarine lamellibranchs were found ; these, however, were badly crushed, and only Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.) sensu lato, could be determined. In the shales above the coal fragmentary shells were observed, with fish-remains, among which were scales of Coelacanthus and Elonichthys.

     About 4 to 5 fathoms above the Albert is a thin local seam known as the Prince Coal. Though not wrought much, it is of interest because the following fossils were got in the roof-shales in the Hauxley district :—Neuropteris sp., Carbonicola Naiadites sp., and some fish-scales (Coelacanthus?, Rhizodopsis).

     112 The seam seems to be thickest (2 ft. 9 in.) in the disused North Togston Colliery (where it was once mined) ; in the old Radcliffe pit it was 2 ft. 6 in., dwindling to 1 ft. 2 in. at Low Hauxley, in the east.

      The measures between the Albert and Radcliffe Coals are 20 to 22 fathoms thick at North Togston and Low Hauxley, and at Radcliffe, between these places, only 13 fathoms.

      The Radcliffe Coal, unlike the others, seems to have been thinnest in the west, as it was only 3 ft. thick at North Togston. Here there was a 25-in, coal 5 fathoms below it ; this is unknown elsewhere, and may perhaps result from a split between Radcliffe and North Togston, for the Radcliffe section shows a band as follows :—

Ft. In.
Coal, splint 0 6
Coal 3 2
Seggar stone 0 4
Coal 2 4


      The main workings lay east and south of Radcliffe Colliery, but those now in use are reached from the shaft at Hauxley, where the seam lies about 80 fathoms from the surface, and the dip is about 14° to the north. This shaft cut the Hauxley Fault, down south at least 100 fathoms. The bottom of the shaft is approximately level with the nearest Radcliffe Coal workings to the south, in which the fault has been proved at several points, having an E.-W. direction. Farther east, unfortunately, the trend changes to E.S.E. ; this, if continued (as is suggested by a fault seen on the foreshore north of Hauxley Haven), will seriously affect the amount of undersea coal available.

      The seam was 7 ft. 9½ in. thick (parrot coal, 3 in. ; coal, 7 ft. 6½ in.) in the Hauxley Drift, at 405 ft. below sea-level ; a boring at Low Hauxley found it at 10 fathoms from the surface and 5½ fathoms below rock-head, the section amounting to 5 ft. 4½ in. (coal and splint, 1½ in. ; coal, 5 ft. 2 in. ; blackstone and coal 1 in.); a few fragmentary shells were noticed in the shales immediately on top of the coal. An outcrop on the shore near by was wrought during the miners'. strike of 1926, where the splint coal so often occurring at the top of the seam was found to be a dull, black, fine-grained coal, with conchoidal fracture and of canneloid aspect, best described as a 'parrot' it is very different from the 'splint' which forms the bottom of the Queen Coal.

      South of the Hauxley Fault about 90 fathoms of strata are known above the Radcliffe Coal. At least five coals occur within this series, and the measures are of interest since they are113quite the highest in the Broomhill coalfield. The general sequence is :—


Ft. In.
Strata, including the HAUXLEY SANDSTONE 200 0
No. 1 Coal 2 7
Strata 45 0
No. 2 Coal 3 0
Strata 60-80 0
No. 3 Coal, with bands 6 0
Strata 100 0
No. 4 Coal 2-2 10
Strata 30 0
No. 5 Coal 2 0
Strata 40 0


      The two bottom coals are very constant ; they were got in the shaft by the railway east of Togston, in the Radcliffe pit and in borings around Hauxley, where No. 4 was 2 ft. 10 in. thick. This latter coal is believed to represent the High Main of more southern districts, although the characteristic 'shell-bed,' through lack of exposures, has not, as yet, been noticed here ; shells, however, occur in the shales above this coal on the coast at Bondi Carrs (see p. 105).

      The chief seam, No. 3, was proved at 47 fathoms in a boring 300 yards east of Hauxley. It is thought to be the same as that repeated to the south by the Bondicarr Fault, and wrought (nearly 5 ft. thick) on the foreshore during the miners' strike of 1926.

      There are broken exposures of these measures on the shore north of Low Hauxley, but the actual coal outcrops are generally covered by sand. It is of interest to note, however, that a plant-bed, succeeded by a 'shell-bed,' was discovered almost opposite Hauxley ; its position is uncertain, but it is either just above or below No. 1 Coal. Amongst the considerable assemblage here were the following :—Cyclopteris sp., Mariopteris nervosa Brongn., Neuropteris gigantea Sternb., N. sp., Rhodea sparsa Kidst., Sphenopteris trifoliata (Artis), S. sp., Calamites carinatus Sternb., C. sp., Annularia radiata Brongn., Lepidodendron lycopodioides, Kidst., L. sp., Lepidostrobus, Pinnularia capillacea L. and H.

     The mussels, found a few feet higher up, were not so plentiful. Amongst them were Carbonicola acutella W. B. Wright, C. cf. exoleta (Brown), C. sp. and Naiadites sp. This is the highest fossil-bed known within the Broomhill coalfield.

      At the top of the shore-section comes the Hauxley Sandstone, a massive, brownish and reddish rock. This is as much as 70 ft. thick in borings inland, but on the shore only the lower part is visible, much being concealed under clay and sand. These bottom beds are noticeably coarse and gritty, with inclusions of red shale, and with greenish bands. The red and green colours recur in underlying shales and seem quite characteristic.

      Togston.—A small field, now practically exhausted, is found around Togson, between two branches of the Hauxley Fault. The southern branch has been proved to have a downthrow to south of 40 fathoms ; it is not so easy to estimate the throw of the northern one, as the horizon of the beds on the upthrow side cannot be accurately fixed, but it cannot fall far short of 100 fathoms.

     An old shaft about 500 yards S.W. of Hope House is said to have cut the Queen Coal, 5 ft. thick, at 16 fathoms, and reached the Top or Princess Coal, 4 ft. thick, at 26 fathoms. Workings in the latter coal holed into others from an old shaft (Mole's pit) on the roadside 365 yards to the W.N.W., said to have been sunk to the Princess Coal against the main boundary-fault. About 100 yards along the road southwards from Mole's pit, where the highway from Amble takes a sharp bend to the S.E., the Top Coal, 3 ft. 8 in. thick, was found at 20 fathoms in the Plantation pit, and the Duke or Main, 5 feet thick, at 33 fathoms. Workings in the Main were more extensive 230 yards farther west, where the coal, 5 ft. thick, was ,of very good quality, but there seems to be nothing of value lower down. Several borings, between the Main Coal outcrop and Chester House to the east, went to 45 fathoms without encountering any workable seam.

       Amble.—The exposures in the cliffs and on the foreshore for about a mile south of Warkworth Harbour provide the only good sections we have of beds low down in the Coal Measures. Several fossil-bands occur and a few coals, but the exact relationship of these seams to the coals south of the Hauxley Fault is very uncertain. Most of the sequence would appear to lie below the Bottom Coal of Broomhill.

      The general dip is to the S.E., at angles varying from 3° to 8°. A coal, said to have been found many years ago in sewer cutting at the harbour, was reported to be 12 in. thick. It has been taken arbitrarily as the base of the Middle Coal Group. An 18-in. coal a short distance above is said to have been proved at the Gas Works, and again at the top of an old quarry 150 yards to the south. Nothing can now be seen of these coals or their associated strata. Not far above, however, the rock-section begins, on the coast at the south pier beacon. Here are the Pan Rocks, yellowish, bedded sandstones forming a broad outcrop on the foreshore. At least 30 feet thick, they were once extensively quarried for water-filters, being coarse, gritty and pebbly, at least in the lower beds. Towards the top they are flaggy and highly false-bedded, and are covered by 12 to 15 feet of greenish shales. These have small clay-ironstone concretions towards the base, and 115
in the middle ramifying accretions of hard, light-grey, slightly limy marl, weathering pale-yellow. These latter occur as irregular masses up to 6 ft. long by 2 ft. wide, as dyke-like bands 4 or 5 feet long and about 12 in. wide with smaller and thinner offshoots at right angles, and again as bosses with irregularly radiating arms, generally 12 in. or so wide; at several localities they rest without disturbance on the green shales. The green shales seem to shade up gradually into a 2 to 3-ft. bed of pale-grey fireclay with carbonaceous traces. Above are 18 feet of sandy shales, with thin shale bands and several ribs of clay-ironstone. Several fossiliferous bands occur here, and among the shells collected were :— Carbonicola cf. aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. aff. fulva Davies and Trueman, C. aff. communis Davies and Trueman, C. aff. turgida (Brown), C. cf. os-lancis W. B. Wright, C. cf. subconstricta (J. Sow.), C. sp. nov. ? (tending to resemble C. retrotacta W. B. Wright), C. sp. Naiadites quadrata (J. de C. Sow.), N. cf. triangularis (J. de C. Sow.), and Spirorbis sp. Dr. Pringle states that some specimens, found about 20 feet above the pale-grey fireclay, suggest Carbonicola robusta (J. de C. Sow.) but that they cannot be identified with certainty. Then comes a 12-in. coal on 2 ft. of pale-grey fireclay, separated from a higher coal by 12 feet of highly false-bedded, shaly sandstone, 8 feet of sandy shales and 6 feet of fireclay. This upper coal was in two divisions, a lower, 18 in. thick, separated by 18 in. of fireclay from an upper 6-in. leaf. Overlying shales are 18 in. thick, of which the bottom 6 in. are fairly fossiliferous. The shells are rather friable and fragmentary, but the following were recognized :—Spirorbis sp., Carbonicola aquilina (J. de C. Sow.), C. concinna W. B. Wright and Naiadites sp. Above are 4 or 5 feet of sandy shales, whose dip changes from 8° to the S.E. to an opposite dip of 12° where they abut against an E.-W. crush or fault of unknown throw, which can he traced seawards as far as low-water

mark. Beyond this a sandstone was once quarried near Link House, and supplied much of the stone for building at Amble. It rests on a coal 2 ft. 3 in. thick (at one time wrought on the foreshore), and the lower parts are highly carbonaceous. Mr. Eckford states that in a small collection at Amble school are Gyracanthus spines, said to have been got near the base of a conglomeratic sandstone, where he himself found a fish-tooth and fragments of spines. The Link House sandstone forms the cliff for some distance southwards, and there are extensive outcrops on the foreshore; the upper beds, which lie in a series of folds, are false-bedded and lenticular, with several bands of shale. At the south end of the exposures a broad domed outcrop of sandstone covers a coal, locally 2 ft. 5 in. thick. This seam would certainly appear to lie under the higher beds of the Link House sandstone ; it may even be the seam known at the north end of116 the cliff at the base of the sandstone, brought up by a low synclinal, but this is by no means certain.

      Where last exposed in the cliffs the Link House sandstone starts to rise southwards. During the miners' strike of 1926 the underlying coal was worked extensively, not only on the foreshore under the covering dome of sandstone, but also under the sand-hills ; it was reached here through many small shafts sunk from the beach above high-water mark, and the seam, gently undulating, was worked for more than 30 yards under the dunes. The coal was of a hard, black, canneloid nature with conchoidal fracture, and contained some fish-remains.

      Beyond this point is a half-mile stretch of sandy beach, bordered by low sand-hills, at the south end of which several coals were worked during the miners' strike of 1926. One of these, 2 ft. 9 in. thick, close in to the base of the dunes, lies in a narrow basin ; seawards it is soon stopped by a fault, on the opposite side of which a second and somewhat thicker seam makes a semi-circular outcrop, the dip changing from north through north-east to east. This bed, 3 ft. to 3 ft. 3 in. thick, is close up to the great Hauxley Fault. Possibly it may be the Princess Coal ; if so, the fault hereabouts would have a downthrow to south of 120 to 130 fathoms.

      Some further evidence as to these lowest Coal Measures may be gleaned from a boring (Broomhill 'O' bore) put down in 1900 on the edge of the links, 500 yards north of Hauxley. This went to 72 fathoms, meeting many coals under 2 ft. in thickness. Much the same record was got in a boring on Coquet Island, 75 fathoms deep ; this was mostly in sandstone with some thin coals. A third boring, on the side of the wagon-way from the old Radcliffe Colliery to Warkworth Harbour, and about 600 yards N. by E. of Moor House, was continued to 64 fathoms, meeting mostly thin coals, although one passed through at 24 fathoms gave the following section :—


Ft. In.
Coal 0 4
Black metal 0 2
Coal 1 6
Grey metal 0 3
Coal 1 8


Evidently there is a deterioration of all seams below the Main or Duke position north of the Hauxley Fault, just as there is along the seaboard, on the south side of that dislocation.

      There are traces of old coal-pits on either side of the Amble Togston road ; according to Topley one of these that about a quarter of a mile west of Hope House—got the Yard Coal at 7 fathoms and the Given's, 2 ft. thick, at 27 fathoms. These cannot be the Yard Coal (Bottom of Broomhill) and the Given's Coal as now known at Broomhill. They are undoubtedly much lower and must lie near the base of the Coal Measures. The lower seam is 117quite likely the same as the 3-ft. one cut at 16 fathoms in the deep Broomhill bore (950 yards to the west by north), and although mapped as lying at the top of the Millstone Grit it might conceivably represent the Brockwell. In the bore (for details see Appendix I, p. 150), the coal rests on about 17 fathoms of 'post,' the cores of which are, in part at least, a coarse pebbly grit. In another boring 500 yards to the S.E. the same coal appears to be represented by a seam 2 ft. thick at 12 fathoms, resting on at least 20 fathoms of sandstone.


Note on the Coal Measure Correlations
      Hitherto little or no attempt has been made to correlate the northern or Broomhill area with that to the south around Ashington. Probably this was on account of the entire absence of pits and underground workings in the intervening coastal strip bordering Druridge Bay. This remarkable lack of information has now been remedied by borings put down about 1925 in the Druridge district. Aided by these a correlation (Fig. 3, p. 63) can be attempted, but it is offered with some diffidence, for the coals concerned are liable not only to lateral variation, but also to much regional impoverishment.

      It may be suggested that the Radcliffe and Ashington Main Coals, each the thickest of their particular district, may be one and the same. This conclusion is by no means a mere assumption, for in each case, 60 fathoms or so above the coals, there is a 70-ft. post of brownish, reddish-stained sandstone. At Woodhorn, E. by N. of Ashington, this is much quarried, and in part used for grindstones, as at Newcastle (the Grindstone Sill), while on the adjoining shore, at Beacon Point, the lower beds show pellets of red shale and pebbly bands. In the Broomhill field, near Hauxley, the same characters are in evidence. The correlation implies that the equivalent of the High Main of Ashington and Newcastle may be found in the second coal above the Radcliffe of Hauxley. It is therefore of interest to note that there is a ' shell-bed ' above this coal on the Hauxley coast at Elm Bush, and that the assemblage here is considered by Dr. Trueman to fall within the similis-pulchra zone, to which belongs also the High Main 'shell-bed' of Ashington and the Tyne.

      Further, the Albert Coal of Broomhill agrees very well with the Yard of Ashington, as proved in borings at the south end of Druridge Bay. It is to be noted that both seams overlie a persistent sandstone group, which both at Broomhill/ and Ashington is generally rather coarse. In the Broomhill country this sandstone in turn overlies the -Queen and Little Wonder Coals, and their representatives are to be found all 118 down the coast from Druridge to Newbiggin and Woodhorn. West of the latter place, towards Ashington and Pegswood, the sandstone appears to cut out the upper coal,  in which case the lower, the Bensham of Ashington (Stone Coal of Newbiggin) would represent the Little Wonder of Broomhill. Both coals reappear between Widdrington Station and Ferney Beds, but half a mile east of the latter locality only one coal is present.

      Amongst the lower measures difficulties are encountered, for in the Ashington sequence the seams from the Five-Quarter to the Plessey are very variable subjects all over the country between the Grange Wood and South Linton Faults. Broadly speaking they appear to represent the Top or Princess, Main and Bottom Coals of Broomhill. The Broomhill Top Coal, in two portions at Link House, may be the equivalents of the Five-Quarter and Low Main of New Moor and Ashington, but as both the latter are very variable over a large area the correlation cannot be unduly stressed. The Main of Broomhill may be the 3 ft. 8¾ coal (with bands), known about 5 fathoms above the Plessey in the Stobswood country just west of Widdrington Station. The Bottom Coal of Broomhill may be in or about the Plessey position, for over it there is exceedingly persistent 'shell-bed.' The Cheeveley Coal of Bullock's Hall, underlying the Bottom of Broomhill all over that field, would then represent the 8-in. coal at 5 fathoms from the surface in the shaft of Stobswood Colliery, and also the so-called Bottom Plessey of Ashington and Woodhorn. Lower measures in both areas are in close agreement ; the 'shell-beds' 5 to 8 fathoms below the Bottom Coal of Broomhill are most likely the same as those found over most of the area between the Grange Wood and South Linton Faults, where they are generally 7 to 12 fathoms above the Beaumont. No trace of the Ostracod Band recorded by Dr. Hopkins  has been found within the area of this memoir, although in a recent Broomhill boring, (Coulson's No. 5), ostracods were very numerous above a coal thought to be about the horizon of the Beaumont of Stobswood : here, however, they were only about 12 in. above a Lingula band.

      The lowest coal of the Productive Measures, the Brockwell, where proved in a boring at the south end of Druridge Bay, rests on a thick, massive, coarse pebbly sandstone or grit, as does its equivalent at Broomhill.

      The foregoing correlations have been arrived at by the use of an extensive suite of vertical sections, embracing not only the coals, but also the intervening strata, including the 'shell-beds.' That method is the best at the present time, for it provides evidence which is both comprehensive and abundant. Another way is through the intensive study of 'shell-beds ' alone, but here we 119 are hampered by the relative scarcity of data. A third method of attack has recently been devised by Dr. A. Raistrick, who uses the microspore content of the coals.   This promises well, and indeed it may eventually give the most reliable results of all. At present it is only in its initial stages, but it may be noted that on this basis alone, Dr. Raistrick suggests that the Bottom Coal of Broomhill may be the Beaumont of the main field. Strong as his evidence is, it is not borne out by that from the older methods, for not only is the sequence of strata at variance, but the Bottom Coal of Broomhill has a 'shell-bed' below it which is quite unrepresented under the Beaumont of the main field. Possibly when we have microspore diagrams of all the coals in and around these positions a common agreement may be found. If in the meantime the present reading is preferred, it is only because it is based on evidence which is relatively abundant.



      THE Whin Sill is the most prominent intrusion in Northumberland and Durham, and the literature dealing with it is exhaustive. It has been described, with much petrological and stratigraphical detail, in recently published memoirs of the Geological Survey.  A more summary treatment is adopted here, for in the Rothbury Sheet the intrusion is of relatively small importance.

      As is well known, the Sill belongs to the quartz-dolerite group, a rock-type particularly prevalent among the Carboniferous intrusions of the North of England. Its composition and texture are remarkably uniform ; normally it is a dark bluish-grey rock, whose crystalline texture is sufficiently coarse to allow the chief constituents to be detected by the unaided eye.

      Nothing is known of the Sill throughout the northern half of our area. Its first appearance is south of the Coquet valley, about two miles south of Brinkburn Railway Station, where it forms a slight eminence known as Wards Hill, at the top of the steep slope overlooking the Forest Burn. A 20-ft. vertical face of hard, bluish, fine-grained 'whin' was at one time exposed and quarried here for road-metal. At this point the rock is intrusive into the Great Limestone, which can be seen above and below the whin. Apart from a certain amount of bleaching and baking the limestone is not greatly affected, and there is no marmorisation of any account.

      To the south-west there is a small quarry on the roadside half a mile south-east of Forestburn Gate, exposing 15 feet of columnar whin with characteristic concentric or spheroidal weathering. Still farther south-west is the most important working within the area, that near the Font Reservoir, a mile north of Ewesley. Quarrying here is on an extensive scale, the normal output being over 30,000 tons per annum. Glacial drift, from 10 to 12 ft. thick, covers most of the surface hereabouts, and this mass of whin, unknown at the time of the original survey, was only discovered 25 years ago, when rock-fragments were found around rabbit-holes. At its maximum the whin is about 60 ft. thick, hard and bluish-grey, with a rudely columnar habit (Plate IV, B). The joints, seldom departing from the vertical, are all much iron-stained and the rock is said to be softer and greyer to the west. During quarrying a patch 30 ft. across was uncovered in the north-east corner of the quarry. This is no longer visible, but was said to have been much121darker and coarser than the rest of the rock : possibly it may represent a 'feeder.' Sandstone covers the sill, and in one place shales were found underneath, probably those overlying the Great Limestone, at one time wrought a short distance away.

      A further intrusion, on a lower horizon, has been proved about a mile to the west, being laid bare when the overlying boulder-clay was removed for the embankment at the reservoir. This lower sill must certainly be below the Shilbottle Coal. Such off-shoots from the main sheet have been noted elsewhere in Northumberland.

      Southwards, whin appears below the Six-Yard Limestone at Dikehead, and a boring 300 yards to the east ended in 3 ft. of whin immediately under the limestone. A mile beyond this, at Gallows Hill, the Sill is just beneath the Great Limestone. South of the farm a fault trending E.N.E. seems to shift both the limestone and the whin, and may well be later than the intrusion. A mile to the west, near Fairnley, whin forms a 'green-hill,' a rudely circular outcrop of greyish-weathering rock, not much more than 130 yards in diameter. There is a rather poor exposure at Coldwell, in the extreme south-west corner of Sheet 9, at an horizon well below the Six-Yard Limestone.

      The majority of the dykes are quartz-dolerites with a general E.N.E. trend. These have the same petrographical characters and chemical composition as the Whin Sill, with which they would appear to be associated. The most important member of this series is the Causey Park Dyke. Others outcrop in the north-western region around Rothbury.

     The Acklington Dyke is the sole representative, (if an obscure and now unexposed dyke at Pigdon be excepted), of another group trending E.-W. or E.S.E. Others are known along the R. Wansbeck south of Pegswood, just beyond the southern edge of the map. Dykes of the Acklington type are considered to be of Tertiary age on account of their similarity in trend and petrology to the dykes of Mull. They are described as tholeiites—rocks of which the essential minerals are plagioclase felspar and augite, accompanied by mesostasis (a residuum of glass, finely crystalline material or a devitrification product) occupying the interstices between the crystalline elements.

      Quartz-dolerite Dykes (? Late Carboniferous).— Several dykes of the Whin Sill group outcrop in the hill country south-west and north-east of Rothbury. At Weather Head, in the heart of the Simonside Hills, strips of bright green turf mark the line of one of these intrusions. Fragments of weathered rock can be seen at 122 intervals, and again a mile to the south-west. This dyke is in alignment with one known in the adjoining sheet, though lost to view east of Weather Head. Two miles to the north a parallel dyke is seen at intervals for more than 1½ miles on either side of Great Tosson ; the rock has rotted to a deep-brown sand, and fresh specimens are unobtainable. Other dykes trending in the same direction are exposed to the north-east one 600 yards north of Cragside (east of Rothbury), and the other at Wellhope, on the extreme northern edge of the map, just east of the Longframlington-Wooler road. This latter intrusion (the 'Flamborough Dyke' of some authors) is 80 ft. wide, and has been quarried for road-metal, a 50-ft. face being at one time seen. The rock is fine-grained and shows minute quartz crystals in the hand-specimen. An increasing cover of surface deposits, amounting to more than 30 ft., has caused the workings to be abandoned.

      The foregoing quartz-dolerite dykes behave in much the same manner as those at Elsdon, of which Hugh Miller wrote :—"Near Elsdon there appear to be three of these dykes with their lines overlapping . . . looking upon the map as if they were, one after the other, taking up the running in passing westwards." Pro. fessor Holmes has aptly described this behaviour as a system 'en echelon,' the Rothbury-Elsdon group being termed the 'High Green dyke-echelon,' from the type occurrence in Sheet 8.

      Towards the coast we come to the Causey Park Dyke, the longest member of the Whin Sill suite. This has been traced at or near the surface over a distance of 12 miles. In past days it was extensively quarried at Causey Park, where it can be followed continuously for about a mile. More recently it has been wrought near Parkhead, a mile north of Netherwitton. Towards the sea it passes under West Chevington farm, which was always affected by vibrations when blasting was in progress at the Causey Park quarries. Recently it has been proved at Bullock's Hall, where a mine was driven through the intrusion to reach a coal lying to the south. Here it was 63 ft. wide, not very fresh, with a fair amount of quartz-veining accompanied by strings of iron pyrites. From this point seawards the dyke has been proved underground in the coal-workings, but it is not known at the surface. South of Link House 24 ft. of whin were penetrated after passing through 40 feet of 'burnt coal.' A specimen from this locality shows a non-porphyritic, olivine-free rock composed of augite, plagioclase and magnetite, with a great deal of interstitial and brownish devitrified glass. In this case the structure is that of the tholeiitic dolerite, and the dyke compares more closely with the Acklington Dyke than with the Whin Sill. In other parts of its course an andesitic tendency has been, observed. Dr. Holmes regards the123Causey Park Dyke as the most northern member of the St. Oswald's Chapel dyke-echelon, typically developed around Hexham

      Since the Whin Sill dykes have the same general trend as the major faulting of the county, it is not surprising to find these intrusions occasionally following the course of fault-planes. The Causey Park Dyke is an instance; from Bullock's Hall seawards there is little doubt that the intrusion coincides with a fault about 40 fathoms down north. And there is at least one other case in this area, for on the River Font, near Coal House, on the extreme southern edge of the map, a thin dyke (now converted to white-trap ') is associated with minor faulting.

      The Acklington Dyke (Tertiary).— The Acklington Dyke, traceable across the Cheviots and on into the Southern Uplands of Scotland, is quite the most continuous of the North of England Tertiary series. Singularly uniform in character, it is unlike the chief exemplar, the Cleveland Dyke, in that it carries no porphyritic crystals. It is, indeed, very similar to the quartz-dolerites of the Whin Sill suite, but contains a higher proportion of mesostasis and is generally amygdaloidal, the vesicles being filled with calcite or a pale-green glassy chloritic material. The dyke enters Sheet 9 in, the extreme north-west, where it can be traced on either side of Cartington. Thence nothing is seen of it at the surface for nearly six miles, but it has been found underground in the Shilbottle Coal workings in one of the old pits north of Longframlington. East of this it has been quarried north iof Swarland, and again on Coquet-side, near Acklington village. Beyond this it does not seem to reach the surface, although it has been traced for more than 3 miles in the adjoining Broomhill Coalfield.

      Most of the quarries along the course of the dyke are very old and almost completely grassed over, but exposures can still be seen at intervals. In one of these openings, a mile E.S.E. of Cartington, the rock has decomposed to a greenish-grey compact sand. In the Acklington quarries Topley considered that the dyke—said to be 30 ft. wide coincided with a fault down south. This must be a purely local feature, for less than a mile to the east the Top and Main Coals are cut without in any way shifting the seams. At the Top Coal level, about 400 yards N.N.W. of Togston Farm, the intrusion was 26 feet thick, and bordered on either side by almost the same thickness of 'burnt coal.'

      The dyke hereabouts trends a few degrees south of east, and converges towards the Bondicarr Fault, which lies a short distance to the south. Between them the Top Coal has been worked 'long-wall,' a N.-S. face being taken eastwards. Towards the south end of the facethat is, nearest the fault a sill of 'white trap' appeared in the roof of the coal, with an apparent dip towards the south. The coal immediately below the 'trap' is burnt, and a curious feature of the intrusion is the presence of scattered oval or egg-shaped bodies of 'white trap' (slightly bigger than a hen's egg) just below the base of the sill, entirely surrounded by burnt coal. The explanation of the isolation of these small bodies of 'trap' may be similar to that invoked by Dr. Smythe to explain certain phenomena connected with the problem of 'assimilation' of sedimentary rocks by the Whin Sill. That is to say they may be due to the intrusion of liquid whin along cracks, fissures or bedding-planes in the coal and the subsequent squeezing out of some of the liquid by the settling down of overlying strata until portions are isolated from the main mass. The sill may be an off-shoot from the Acklington Dyke, which is only 40 to 50 yards to the north.


Plate IV

Whitehouse Quarries



Whin Sill Ewesley Quarries




      So far as we know the most important faults occur in the highlands of the north-western region, and in the Coal Measures of the coastal belt. Nevertheless the extensive central area of drift-covered Upper Limestones may not be so free from such disturbances as we think, but as to this definite field-evidence is lacking. Certainly so far as the Great and associated limestones are concerned, their outcrops seem to continue almost uninterruptedly right across the map, and the few dislocations known are of no great account.

      The two large faults in the north-west pursue a roughly parallel course, and as their downthrows are in opposite direction they give rise to the elevated 'horst' in which the Simonside Hills are included. The more northerly one (the Bolton-Swindon Fault) is a continuation of the Swindon Fault of Sheet 8, where, according to Hugh Miller, it has a downthrow to north of 2,700 feet.  It enters the area near Bickerton, follows the Coquet valley as far as Rothbury, and then divides on the north side of the town. One branch, running N.E. by E. past Whitefield House, converges towards the Cragend-Chartners Fault ; the other branch, at first proceeding N.W., abruptly swerves round N.E. to join up with the Bolton Fault of the district to the north. The whole line of disturbance being essentially a strike fault with downthrow to north, beds on its southern side are repeated. Associated subsidiary fractures abound in the Debdon district, north of Rothbury.

      The Cragend-Chartners Fault enters the northern fringe of the map near Snook Bank, and runs S.S.W. by way of Cragend towards Chartners. The throw, which is to the east and south, is probably greatest N.W. of Longframlington, where beds just below the Shilbottle Coal are brought against Fell Sandstone. Near Cragend the throw is slightly less (Oxford Limestone against Fell Sandstone) ; this decrease continues to the S.W., lower and lower beds coming in on the downthrow side. Near Lordenshaw a cross-fault can be traced for about four miles, the greater part of its course being along the foot of the escarpment of the Simonside Hills ; it shifts the base of the Fell Sandstone Group on Garleigh Moor to beyond Great Tosson, a displacement of more than two miles.

      Faults in the Limestone Group are unimportant and do not merit detailed description.

      Among the many displacements in the Coal Measures the largest are the Hauxley Fault in the north, and the Stakeford Dyke, (entirely within one-inch Sheet 10), in the south. 126 The Hauxley Fault has been struck at several points in the Radcliffe Coal workings, on the south or downthrow side. Near Hauxley its trend is almost east-and-west; seawards this changes to the E.S.E., and a break in the rocks on the foreshore running in this direction may represent the surface position. Westwards the fault runs W.S.W., dividing near Hope House; the southern branch has been proved to have a downthrow south of 40 fathoms. The Fault is probably at a maximum around Hauxley, where it must be well over 100 fathoms; more than that we cannot say, as the exact position of the unproductive measures on the north, or up-throw, side is unknown.

      There is no evidence to show how far the Hauxley Fault extends west of the Coal Measures ; it may die lout in that direction, as does the Bondicarr Fault, a mile to the south. This, at Newburgh Colliery, has a vertical downthrow to south of 75 fathoms, but dwindles to little or nothing two miles to the west.

     Southwards there are no faults of any note until the Causey Park Dyke is reached. This intrusion coincides with a fault which forms the southern boundary of the Broomhill field ; the coals to the south are undoubtedly older than the adjacent Broomhill seams. At Bullock's Hall the throw, based on a correlation of the Broomhill and Widdrington coals, is 40 fathoms down to north, and the outcrops of the leading Broomhill seams are shifted several miles seaward. Two miles farther south the workings in the Widdrington Main Coal of Stobswood Colliery were interrupted by the Grange Wood Fault, which threw the seam 22 fathoms down south. The disturbance cannot be followed any distance to the west, but eastwards it passes through Grange Wood, and it was doubtless this fracture which limited the workings southward of the old Widdrington pits. Borings on either side of Hemscott Hill (one-inch Sheet 10) suggest that the fault probably passes out to sea south of Druridge.

      All the above-mentioned faults in the Coal Measures have the usual trends, either E. and W. or E.N.E.-W.S.W. A short distance south of the Grange Wood Fault one of the rarer W.N.W.- E.S.E. disturbances was struck at Stobswood Colliery, near Northwood House, the Widdrington Main Coal being thrown a further 17 fathoms down to south. South-eastwards towards Hagg House the throw increases to 20 fathoms, the Yard Coal of Ashington, on the north side of the fault, being almost opposite the High Main. Thence the fault has been followed in the High Main workings towards Ellington, where apparently it converges with the east-and-west South Linton Fault (27 fathoms down north). At the meeting point the relative effect of these two faults on each other cannot be proved, for there are many subsidiary disturbances hereabouts. But beyond this zone both reappear, the South Linton Fault, diminished to 14 fathoms, continuing by a fracture well seen on the coast at Quarry House, whilst the Hagg House Fault runs on south-eastwards close to Ellington Colliery, 127 where the throw is still about 22 fathoms. A minor branch traverses the rocks on the foreshore immediately north of Headagee.

      Some miles to the south the New Moor Fault has been proved in the undersea workings of Newbiggin Colliery, near Lyne Sands, and again for several miles in the Yard seam of Woodhorn. At Lynemouth Cottage the throw is almost 30 fathoms down to north. Westwards towards New Moor the throw decreases to 17 fathoms, and the hade is almost vertical. Here also it suddenly veers round to a north-westerly direction, continuing thus for about 400 yards before resuming the normal west-south-westerly trend. An exactly similar change of direction occurs south-west of the old Longhirst Colliery.

      In addition to the New Moor Fault there are several others lying to the north, and the network of disturbances around the Longhirst pit no doubt accounted for its early abandonment. Of the fractures north of the colliery the more important are the High Stead and Old Moor Faults. The High Stead Fault (22 fathoms down north) trends W. to E. between Broomhill and High Stead, and thence N.E. towards Ellington. The Old Moor Fault runs parallel to it for a considerable distance, but divides near Longhirst Station ; the northern branch, continuing westwards, has a downthrow to south of 20 fathoms. The southern portion is directed to the S.W., probably linking up, north of Fawdon House, with a fault proved to be 11 fathoms down north. The diminished throw may be due to a junction, west of Longhirst Brocks, with the New Moor Fault of opposite throw. Several other disturbances, immediately east of Longhirst village, bring the measures into a narrow trough.

      Minor disturbances occur in the Pegswood area ; the most important is that trending N.W.-S.E., proved in the neighbourhood of Pegswood Moor, and thought to have a throw of 30 fathoms to the north. This fault probably joins a branch of the large 'Stake-ford Dyke' just beyond the southern limits of the map. The 'Dyke' itself runs across the southern margin of one-inch Sheet 10, and forms the boundary between the Woodhorn and North Seaton royalties. In the Low Main workings of North Seaton the fault has been traced over two miles, and on the Woodhorn or downthrow side the coal dips rather steeply towards it ; levels in the Low Main on either side show that the vertical displacement is over 80 fathoms down to north. The complexity of the fracture can be observed in the disturbed rocks on the coast at Spital Carrs, south of Newbiggin-by-the-Sea ; here the faulted face of the yellowish sandstone at the headland dips northwards at high angles against gently south-westerly dipping, slightly buckled sandstones and shales. A southern branch of the fault seems to divide the yellowish sandstone from the gritty and pebbly basal beds of the North Seaton Sandstone, so extensively quarried along the links to the south.



      IN common with the rest of Northumberland, glacial deposits of various kinds cover most of Sheets 9 and 10, rock-exposures being confined in the main to the higher ground or to stream-valleys and the coast. Boulder-clay is the chief deposit, with quite subordinate amounts iof sand and gravel, either interbedded or superimposed. Laminated clays are relatively unimportant.

       Slipping and a rapid growth of vegetation are so prevalent that really good boulder-clay sections of any size are hard to find, although of course there are any number of small ones. Where fully developed the clay, as usual, is in two divisions, parted by sand and gravel. This is interpreted as the product of a single ice-sheet, the lower clay, with a predominance of local boulders, being considered a true ground-moraine. The lower clay has for its matrix a rock-meal of very stiff, bluish clay, with many tiny rock fragments, and contains stones varying from small pebbles up to boulders several feet across. In one-inch Sheet 9 the majority of the boulders are those of the country rock,' that is sandstones, dolerite and limestone, the latter being particularly abundant and usually polished and highly striated.
The upper clay, representing englacial detritus melted out in situ, is occasionally reddish but often brownish and prismatic, especially along the coast. It contains but few stones, mostly small. It has been dug at several places for making tiles. Good sections are few, for opencast workings are rare and this upper clay is by no means so tough or coherent as the lower.

      In the Cementstone country, on either side of the Coquet, west of Rothbury, the boulder-clay covering, though widespread, seems to be thin. In a boring near Thropton it was only 7 ft. thick, under 22 ft of soil. A sandstone quarry north of Plainfield was covered by 4 ft of clay, here reddish, as it was farther north, near Low Trewhitt.

      The Fell Sandstone country generally has only a thin peaty covering ; a sandy or gravelly wash is occasionally present at the foot of the steeper slopes. In the few cases where boulder-clay has been observed, as in a recently opened sandstone quarry on the roadside north of Garleigh Moor, it is, as might be expected, a sandy clay, brownish in colour, with many sandstone fragments and boulders of dolerite and porphyrite. About 15 to 20 ft. of brown clay was also noted in the lower reaches of the Debdon Burn.

    129 Over the Carboniferous Limestone outcrop a boulder-clay mantle is universal, but good sections are rare. In the moorland region south and south-west of the Simonside Hills the clay is entirely local, and apparently in one bed ; exposures revealing up to 15 ft. of sandy boulder-clay, resting on rock-head, were noticed in some of the streams. A boring on the side of the Rothbury road near Coldside, on the slope leading down to the Forest Burn, proved over 24 ft. of glacial drift ; except for the topmost 4 ft. all this was in blue stony clay. Half a mile to the north-east, alongside the burn, a short distance below the Inn at Forestburn Gate, more than 70 ft. was got. At the top came a few feet of alluvial gravel, then 5 ft. of clay on 6½ ft. of sand, with 54 ft. of strong, blue, stony clay underneath, probably the 'lower clay.' The burn here would appear to flow in a pre-Glacial valley ; it is uncertain whether the upper 5 ft. of blue stony clay is a true representative of the upper boulder-clay of the district, but there can be little doubt of its presence in the Coquet valley on either side of Lowframlington. The two clays were seen in a small tributary at Todstead, where the upper reddish clay was separated from the underlying stiff bluish clay by about 8 ft. of sand. Less than a mile higher up the stream no sand was recorded in the Healey Cote pit to the Shilbottle Coal, the clay there being 72 ft. thick.

       Over the Coal Measures country the covering of glacial deposits is very variable in thickness, an average being between 5 and 10 fathoms. There are, however, many borings and sinkings through more than 20 fathoms of drift, but these may be in pre-Glacial river-courses. Borings and shafts throughout the Coalfield show the many changes and variations in thickness and arrangement to which the glacial deposits are liable. Not always does the lower clay rest on solid rock ; instances are known where sand, apparently beneath the lower boulder-clay, rests directly on rock-head. In a recent boring in the Broomhill district solid rock is overlain by a few feet iof coarse sand, bound gravel and laminated clays, the section reading :—


Ft. In.
Loamy soil 2 3
Soft, reddish-brown clay 4 2
Brown laminated clay 6 4
Dark-brown, stony clay 26 5
Brown laminated clay 6 10
Sand 5 1
Hard, bound gravel 6 8
Coarse sand 5 9
Sandstone - -


      In one of the shafts of the Broomhill Colliery the boulder-clays, (top clay, 31 fathoms thick ; bottom clay, 2 fathoms 2 ft.), were separated by 23 ft. of sand, whilst in the adjoining shaft the sand had thinned to 6 ft., and the overlying clay had increased to 6½ fathoms. 130 Over the Broomhill field in general the upper boulder-clay seems to be brown-coloured, but at times may be reddish or even yellow, the lower clay being usually blue or brown. On the coast, at Hadston Carrs, 12 ft. of the lower boulder-clay can be seen ; here it is a stiff blue clay, with many small fragmentary stones and large boulders of dolerite, sandstone and marine limestone.

      Some of the borings in the Broomhill district proved considerable thicknesses of drift. As much as 26 fathoms were recorded on the roadside 600 yards north by east of Woodside, and 22½ fathoms half a mile to the south-east. Farther to the south-east the base of the surface deposits was not reached at 25½ fathoms, and they were still very thick to the east. These borings would appear to be situated on the site of a broad pre-Glacial valley (probably the course of the pre-Glacial Coquet) which passes towards the south-east by Woodside and Whitefield House, and then eastwards towards the present mouth of the Chevington Burn, on either side of which the deposits are more than 16 fathoms thick.

      Along the coast and over most of the area covered by one-inch Sheet 10 the glacial drifts are not very thick ; only in a few cases do they exceed a few fathoms. The greatest thicknesses known are at Lynemouth and Newbiggin Collieries. The massive Woodhorn Sandstone, free from surface deposits, outcrops to the west of Newbiggin, and again on the shore to the east. Between these places are the Newbiggin pits, with more than 75 ft. of drift, whilst the Lynemouth shaft cut about 70 ft. of clays ; probably those pits were sunk on the site of a former valley (very likely the pre-Glacial River Lyne).
      These deposits are relatively inconsiderable. The most extensive spreads are around Felton, where sand and gravel outcrops over a wide area. The thickness is very variable : at the north end of the village, near the turning to Mouldshaugh, an old sand-pit shows more than 10 ft. of false-bedded sand, and there is as much on the west side of the main road hard by. Near Hemelspeth, to the south, a small excavation showed 1 ft. of soil on only 2 ft. of sand, with stiff blue clay below. North of Mouldshaugh, on Coquetside, 1 ft. 6 in. of sand and gravel rests on 10 ft. of stiff blue clay. On the opposite bank, around Haystack Hill and High Park, there appears to be a thin capping of reddish clay overlying the sand, which is seen again at the surface around East Thirston. Much of the Felton water-supply comes from these sands, which obviously lie between the boulder-clays. Similar interbedded deposits are seen higher up the Coquet, between Pauperhaugh and Brinkburn Station, stretching southwards to Brockley Hall. An exposure on the south bank of the Coquet, north of West Row, showed about 8 ft. of sand and gravel at the surface, resting on 2 ft. of laminated clay and 2 ft. of laminated sand. The underlying 131 deposits were not seen, but judging by the swampy nature of the banks and the number of slips they are probably in boulder-clay. A similar case ,of laminated clay resting on boulder-clay was noted on the roadside south of Morpeth, in the adjacent one-inch Sheet 14. This laminated clay ended northwards against boulder-clay, and may mark the site of a temporary lake held up in the ground moraine.

      Sand and gravel covers a narrow strip of country alongside the railway between Ulgham and Longhirst Station, with a tongue extending down the Brocks Burn as far as Bothal. The sand was wrought near Longhirst Brocks, and a boring near by showed it to be 18 ft. thick, underlain by more than 60 ft. of blue clay. Southwards a capping of reddish clay covers the sand, and was wrough for bricks and tiles near Bothal Park. Near Coney Garth there are some featureless sands and gravels, apparently lying on the upper boulder-clay. Interbedded sands outcrop along the streams on either side of Cottingwood Common, and there is a mound of sand and gravel near East Shield Hill.
       In the grounds of Cragside estate, near Rothbury, are moundy or hummocky sands with intervening hollows of 'kettle-hole' type. These deposits probably came from a lobe of stagnant ice, trapped in the Coquet valley hereabouts. Along the river west of Rothbury are several mounds, doubtless originating as sand and gravel patches on the glacier surface, and there are other smaller ones on the flanks of the high ground west of Longframlington. Of more importance are the kame-like deposits extending for about four miles from Spylaw Burn, in the Simonside Hills, south-eastwards towards Nunnykirk. Dr. Smythe associates them with a series of overflow-channels or 'swires,' which took the waters from ice-dammed lakes at the edge of a melting western ice-sheet. Alternatively they may represent supraglacial detritus left behind during a general retreat of the ice down the Font valley. They are at a maximum around Newbiggin and on either side of the River Font north of Ewesley Station.

      A well-defined 'esker,' quite 20 ft. high, is seen two miles west of Blueburn, where it is cut through by a sharp bend in the Blanch Burn. The bedding here is much obscured by slip, but towards the centre of the ridge some of the gravel, cemented into a limy ' pan,' has a distinct horizontal arrangement. The ridge most likely represents the cast of a supraglacial stream.

      One other deposit within the area of the memoir remains to be 132 mentioned, namely that seen on the coast north of the River Lyne (one-inch Sheet 10). This has been described in several papers dealing with the glaciology of Northumberland. Exposures in the cliff have been much obscured of late years by tippings from the nearby collieries of Ellington and Lynemouth. Consequently, not so much of the gravel is seen now as formerly, for, according to Dr. Smythe, at one time it could be traced northwards for more than half a mile from the mouth of the Lyne. He says in his paper : "Its base is about 10 feet above high water mark. At the south end the gravel is clean and firmly cemented in places ; towards the north the pebbles are less developed and embedded in dirty sand. Sandstones and limestones (many reddish in colour) are the chief constituents, and whinstone and magnesian limestone are abundant. Of the far-travelled rocks the most conspicuous are Cheviot porphyrites. Chalk and chalk flints occur here, as at Horsebridge Head, along with greywacke, mica schists, garnetiferous mica schist (Pitlochrie ?), syenite, quartz porphyries, trachyte and chert.

      "From its position this bed might reasonably be regarded as a raised beach. One may look upon it, on the other hand, as a glacial gravel which has been laid bare by marine erosion."

       The best section now available shows blown sand resting on gravel 10 to 12 feet thick. The pebbles are angular or, more generally, sub-angular, and only the very small sandstone pebbles are well-rounded ; there is no trace of bedding. The base is a conspicuous ledge of concreted rock, beneath which the underlying boulder-clay has been eroded away. This ledge, 2 ft. thick, is composed of cemented gravel and boulders in a matrix of concreted sand, simulating sandstone. In the centre is a very fine cemented gravel in which some included sandstone boulders measure more than 12 inches across, whilst there are many large stones at the top and bottom. Beneath the overhanging ledge there is a 6- to 12-in, bed of almost stoneless, pale chocolate or chocolate-brown clay, resting on boulder-clay of ground moraine type. Several miles inland, on the banks of the River Font, just north of Mitford, the boulder-clay is covered by a ledge of concreted rock similar to that mentioned above ; on this are gravels, and the whole is surmounted by reddish clay. In this case the deposit is obviously interbedded between the boulder-clays. The deposit at the mouth of the River Lyne may well be of a similar kind.

        'Dry-valleys ' which originally carried melt-water during the waning of the ice-sheet are not very numerous, and only a few are of notable size. Most of them have been described in Dr. Smythe's paper and for detailed matter reference should be made to that work.

  133 One of the finest examples of a 'severed spur' channel is that at Selby's Cove (Plate V, A), on the southern face of the Simonside Hills, near Weather Head. The high ground was probably clear at the time and the ice was retreating in a general southerly direction down the headwaters of the Forest Burn. The Ousen Sike valley being blocked, water was impounded in the hollow between the ridge, running E.N.E. from Weather Head, and the high ground to the north. The Cove was cut right through this ridge, exposing more than 40 feet of Fell Sandstone.

      Dr. Smythe's view is different from the foregoing : he considered that ice was lying on the high ground when the cove was formed. But all our Cheviot experience shows that high ground was bared first of all, and moreover a little to the west, at a slightly higher level, there is a small 'contour' or marginal channel (Jabel's Trew), which can only be accounted for on the assumption that ice was lying on the lower slopes, the higher ground being quite free. The intake of the 'Trew' is about 25 feet above the 1,250-ft. contour, and the channel is about 120 yards long, deepening towards the west. With the withdrawal of the ice the drainage took a short cut down the hill, and a notch in the 1,250-ft. contour probably marks the beginning of the new drainage channel, the lower part of which is now occupied by Jabeltrew Sike. At a later stage Selby's Cove was cut.

      Dr. Smythe has described a series of channels which he associates with the sands and gravels around Newbiggin. Most of them are of no great account, the only one at all noteworthy being that alongside the railway north of Fontburn Station. It is a deep, narrow valley which has been cut through the Six-Yard Limestone, apparently as an overflow channel into the Forest Burn when ice was retreating down the Font valley the intake is just above the 600-ft. contour. The channel lies in a hollow with rising ground to east and west, and ice may have stayed here for a considerable period before melting away.

     The largest overflow-channel within the area is that at Haredene (Plate V, B). In its initial stages this is a flat-bottomed, steep-sided channel with an intake about 436 feet above sea-level along the upper 500 yards of its course is a broad alluvial flat, below which the channel is steeper and narrower. Towards the outlet, but somewhat above the present stream-level, are traces of an earlier course which was subsequently abandoned. The Haredene 'overflow ' was probably marginal to coastal ice re- treating eastwards, and quite possibly in its initial stages was connected to a small channel running parallel to the road west of Blackpool.

      With further dwindling of the ice-sheet lesser channels may have been in operation, 134 such as Fen Letch and the adjoining one east of Peigh Hills, which unite to form Bailiff's Letch, a tributary of the River Lyne. These are certainly not normal drainage features, and are marked by small, rather stagnant ditches. They begin as broad alluvial flats, with sides which slope very gently upwards, unlike the more steep-sided. Haredene overflow.

       On the northern edge of Sheet 9 a large overflow (Millstone Cleugh) lies alongside the Wooler road. This has been noted previously. The channel commences as a broad peaty flat which deepens rapidly to a narrow valley, as much as 70 feet deep in places, through the massive Fell Sandstone ; at its outlet there is a mound of gravel with a flanking terrace of peat.
      Rock-outcrops showing glacial striae or grooving are not common in either Sheet. One or two have been noted on hard beds in the Fell Sandstone, and a few are on limestone surfaces exposed during quarrying operations.

     Two directions of ice movement are apparent. The first is due to a western ice-sheet coming from the Southern Uplands of Scotland, as shown by striae seen on Fell Sandstone outcrops east of Rothbury. Most of these have a general trend a few degrees north of east, though several are directed somewhat south of east. Near Longframlington a direction at right angles to this sets in ; here a recently exposed surface of limestone showed striae trending 10° east of south, an almost parallel direction being noted on the sandstone of Redheugh Crag, 3½ miles to the north. These were no doubt due to ice moving southwards along the coastal belt, owing to pressure of Scandinavian ice lying off the coast. North-and-south striae were noticed by Topley in his original survey, on the foreshore north of Newbiggin-by-the-Sea.
      Fresh-water Alluvia.— There is not much alluvium within Sheets 9 and 10. As might be expected, the most extensive stretches are those seen at intervals along the River Coquet, and to a lesser extent along the River Font. All are liable to flooding after heavy rainfall. There are small remnants of terraces here and there, but none that calls for detailed description. The largest are those along the Font below Netherwitton.

     There are some fairly large peat bogs in the moorland region south of the Simonside Hills. That north of Spylaw is more than 10 feet thick. A remnant of a small silted-up lake can be seen at Lough House, a little more than a mile N.E. of Pigdon. One or two drain-sections here showed dark peaty soil about a135 foot thick, on either sand (sometimes 2 feet thick) or clay, or on clay and sand mixed. Occasionally the clay is stoneless and plastic, but rapidly becomes gritty and sandy.

     Blown Sand : Storm Beaches.—There is a narrow fringe of blown sand all along the coast. The dunes never rise to any great height, rarely being more than 50 feet above sea-level. The trigonometrical station (65 ft. O.D.) on the links south of Hemscott Hill farm is about their highest point.

      No true raised beach is known, although over most of the blown sand area a narrow storm-beach is found immediately above high-water mark, extending to the foot of the dunes.

      Buried Forest.—A submerged forest-bed is exposed on the coast south of Hauxley, just north of Elm Bush. It is first noticed in the cliff above high-water mark, under blown sand. Here one sees 2½ feet of peat, with twigs and stems of trees—among which silver birch are very common—mostly prostrate, but occasionally upright. This rests on 3 feet of clay, with small stones and roots of trees. A short distance to the south the forest bed recurs, between tidemarks. This 'submerged forest' is no doubt a northerly extension of the well-known one occasionally seen off the Durham coast near Sunderland it is seen again under the sand-hills at Amble, and is also known farther north near Howick.



Late Glacial Cut Selbey's Cove, Simonside Hills



Haredene Late Glacial Channel




      Lead-ore.— Galena-mining has been tried in a very small way at several localities amongst the Lower Carboniferous rocks within the Rothbury Sheet. The most northerly workings are situated on the northern slopes of the Simonside Hills, above Whittondean, in Tuedian beds. Traces of disused mines can still be seen in the burn-side a short distance below Whittondean farm, whilst higher up on the hillside are the circular remains of old workings—apparently shafts in which fragments of barytes (with cubes of galena) adhering to Fell Sandstone rock can occasionally be found. Writing in 1923 Dr. Stanley Smith  says :— " According to information supplied by Mr. D. D. Dixon, of Cragside, the ore was obtained by a drift into the hillside, where large heaps of debris are still to be seen. It is reported by old residents that Sir Edward Blackett, who owned the estate, worked the mine himself in the 18th Century, but that the ore contained so little silver that it did not pay. W. Topley, however, states that the mine never yielded much ore. There are several shallow circular holes in the hill which Topley regarded as traces of early lead-mines, and in these pieces of galena are still to be found.

      Lead-ore was at one time mined near Redpath, in the remote moorland country up the Fallowlees Burn. According to Stanley Smith "The vein, which trends nearly north-and-south" [through the Oxford Limestone], "is ,exposed, and has been worked on the east side of Jock's Nowe, a triangular outcrop of limestone some 150 yards in length, with the stream running on its eastern and southern sides, and an old forsaken channel defining it on the west. It was reported on by George Henderson about 1852 and a large quantity of lead-ore is said to have been obtained at the surface, both from the vein and in the form of large loose pieces. A number of east-and-west strings (character not mentioned) are stated to cross the burn near the vein. North of the Nowe the vein has not been found, although two drifts have been driven in search of it. On the south side of the stream it has been followed for some distance but has proved unproductive, though a string carrying a ribbon of galena, 1 inch in width but diminishing southwards, was cut about 2 ft. away from the cheek.

 137 'Topley' states that the vein has yielded a good deal of ore, but the report does not convey this impression. The mine, however, is old, for it was mentioned by John Wallis in 1769.

     "According to the information gathered by George Henderson, a vein "bearing about N.76°E. Magnetic Meridian" was cut early last century, in process of draining on Hartington Farm in the immediate vicinity 'of the village"  [in the south-western corner of one-inch Sheet 9]. " Some ore was obtained, and the farmer upon whose land the discovery was made stated that one piece of solid ore weighed 4-cwt. A shaft was thereupon sunk to a depth of 4 or 5 fathoms and the vein opened for some 10 or 12 yards eastwards, but the owner of the land would not permit further development.

     " Some thirty years later, at the time the report was written, another shaft was sunk to the same depth as the first, and a level was driven from this to the foot of the earlier one, but no ore was obtained. Mr. Henderson states that he was not able to see the vein itself, but that the stratum on both sides of it appeared to be a 'whin' and the matrix calcite. He was told that there was a 'good mine' left standing in the eastern forehead."

      Strings of galena have occasionally been met with along faults in the local Coal Measures, but never, apparently, in commercial quantity. During the re-survey good specimens, showing well-formed octahedra of galena with small cubic faces, on a base of iron pyrites, were obtained from a fault in the Harvey seam of Pegswood Colliery, about a mile north-west of the shafts.

      Iron-ore.—There are bands and concretions of clay-ironstone amongst shales at many levels, chiefly in the Limestone Group. Generally they are small and worthless, the one exception to this being in the shales overlying the Six-Yard Limestone. These were at one time quarried near Pauperhaugh in the Coquet Valley, about four miles south-east of Rothbury, and the ironstone nodules smelted on the spot at Brinkburn Ironworks, long since disused. Coal for smelting was at hand in the Shilbottle seam. These shales, with clay-ironstone concretions 4 to 6 in. thick and more than 12 in. across, are well exposed in the Forest Burn, just below Forestburn Gate.

      Coal.— While the vast majority of the coal raised has of course come from the Coal Measures proper, nevertheless certain seams in the lower Groups have at times been productive. The lowest of these are in the Scremerston Group, where workings, in the main, have been confined to the Debdon area north of Rothbury. Here there does not appear to have been more than one good seam, and that no more than 2 ft. 2 in. thick. The deepest pits went to 30 fathoms or thereabouts, and there are many traces of lesser shafts. Probably little remains to be got, and in any case 138 the coal is soon cut out beyond the Rothbury-Alnwick road by the fault which brings up the underlying Fell Sandstone.

      In the Limestone Group coals occur at various horizons. Those associated with the Oxford Limestone have been dug near their outcrops in Hope Wood, near Cragend, a few miles east of Rothbury, but the chief seam, considerably higher, is the well-known Shilbottle Coal. This has been mined all along its outcrop from Newton-on-the-Moor right down to the Coquet Valley, and until quite recently at Healey Cote, S.W. of Longframlington. South of the Coquet the seam is not in such good state, and at the Lee Colliery (disused) was split by a thick band. The most southerly working was at the old Whiteside Colliery, in the Font valley, where, although the coal was 2 ft. 3 in. thick, its quality seems to have deteriorated, as little work was done. In the more productive ground north of the Coquet the seam is between 2 ft. 6in. and 3 ft. thick. It is a bituminous house coal, igniting easily, hot, but slow in burning, and leaving only a small amount of ash, which is heavy and has a characteristic dark reddish-brown colour. The price of this famous coal is a testimony of its quality, for it is as a rule the most expensive in Northumberland. There should be extensive reserves still intact east of the old workings, and here the coal should lie at very gentle angles and be relatively free from faults ; but its depth is too great for consideration at present.

      The Top Coal (Townhead of Shilbottle) does not appear to have been of much value. It is always split by one or more bands, and has been mined chiefly for calcining the Great Limestone, with which it is associated all along the outcrop north of the Font valley.

     The Hazon Coal, about 60 fathoms above the Great Limestone, has been wrought only in the Hazon country. It appears to have been about 2 ft. thick, but nothing is known of its quality.

      Along the southern outcrop of the Upper Limestone Group the more important seams are the Rothley or Chirm Coal (Little Limestone Coal of the Tyne area), and the Netherwitton Coals. None of these is at present being worked, but a higher seam, (2 thick), is being mined on a small scale around Stanton.

     Coals are known at several horizons in the Millstone Grit, but none have been wrought to any extent. They are neither thick nor of good quality.

     As might be expected, most of the workable seams in the true Coal Measures have been wrought at one time or another, although less work has been done amongst the lower ones, especially in the Ashington field. The most valuable coals are probably the High Main, Yard, and Low Main, and as a consequence these have received most attention. The Yard is a house coal, quite the best in the Coal Measures of Northumberland, and a rival to the Shilbottle seam itself. It is a bright, free-burning hot coal, which leaves little ash.139 The High Main and Low Main are steam coals of first class quality and also fairly good house coals. The Low Main is especially good in this area, and is almost wrought out. Most of the other seams are best described as steam coals. The Brockwell, hitherto little wrought, may perhaps prove an exception, for in the Cottingwood district it has a reputation as a good house coal. An analysis from a recent trial at Pegswood Colliery gave the following result :—


Fixed carbon 55.64%
Volatiles 38.07%
Sulphur  0.48%
Ash  3.32%
Moisture  2.49%
Calories 8080
B.T.U.s 1454


      In the Broomhill field most of the seams are steam coals ; probably the best are the Top (Princess of Hauxley), Main (Duke of Hauxley) and Bottom Coals. The Duke and Queen, as now wrought at Hauxley, are fairly good house coals. Both give a brown ash, and burn well in open grates.

      Fireclays.— Many collieries now make bricks, either from the seat-earths (fireclays) which underlie the majority of the coals, or from the shales above the seams ; occasionally a mixture of shale and fireclay is used. At Ashington fireclays are taken from the High Main and Five-Quarter seams, whilst the shale or 'brat' roof of the Low Main is extensively employed, as at Pegswood. Ashington, in 1933, mined 3,533 tons of clay and made 3,573,500 bricks. Pegswood is at present turning out 80,000 bricks per fortnight.

     At Stobswood Colliery one of the fireclays is made into bricks by the Burn Fireclay Company, whose works adjoin the pit.

      In the Broomhill district the fireclays used are those underlying the Queen and Top Coals, those below the Main and Bottom seams being variable in thickness and occasionally absent. The output of fireclay at Broomhill is about 8,000 tons per annum.

      Building Stone.—Despite the frequency with which sandstones occur throughout the Carboniferous rocks of this part of Northumberland, few are of outstanding quality. None are wrought in the Cementstone Series, while even in the massive Fell Sandstone Group only the lowest beds appear to be of any value. These have been extensively quarried along the base of an escarpment at Pondicherry, a mile west of Rothbury ; the quarries are worked as the occasion demands, and they seem to have supplied much stone for the neighbouring town. Beds about the same horizon were wrought at Cragside for most of the buildings on Lord Armstrong's estate. Other sandstones in the Limestone Series, Millstone Grit, and Coal Measures were quarried purely for local use, and few are utilized today.

      The one exception to this is the sandstone in the Upper Coal Group now wrought near Woodhorn. The base of this sandstone is about 50 fathoms above the High Main Coal, and where quarried at Woodhorn village presents an unbroken face over 70 feet high. The stone is brownish in colour, and is much in demand for grindstones—shipped mostly to Norway and Sweden—and for facings for buildings. This is probably the stone now being worked on the upthrow side ,of the 'Stakeford Dyke,' on the coast south of Newbiggin-by-theSea.

      Lime.—Several of the limestones in the higher beds of the Cementstone Group have been quarried freely in past times for agricultural and building lime. Most of these workings have long since been abandoned, although one at the Glebe, a mile S.W. of Rothbury, is still in use for road-metal.

      Amongst the Bernician limestones one or two have been used in former times, but the only one extensively wrought was the Great Limestone, in which quarries can be seen at intervals along the outcrop. One at Greenleighton is still used on occasions for road-metal, but no limestone is now being calcined anywhere in the district.

     Road Metal.— Apart from the small amount of limestone quarried intermittently for minor roads, the best of the road-metal —as always in Northumberland—comes from the Whin Sill. There is an active quarry at Wards Hill, about four miles south of Rothbury, but the principal one is farther south, near Ewesley Station. The latter undertaking, worked by the Ewesley Quarry Co., Newcastle-upon-Tyne, is fairly extensive. The average yearly output for the last five years was 32,767 tons. The stone is accepted by the Northumberland County Council specification, which requires a crushing strength of 43,700 lb. per square inch. The material is supplied in the rough for road-foundations, and in various grades crushed and screened from ¾ in. up to 2¼ in., for road-surfacing, tarred and untarred. Material is also supplied in various sizes, from dust upwards, for concrete aggregate, whilst about 1,000 tons of paving sets are produced yearly.

     Sand, Gravel and Clay.—These deposits, for one reason or another, are not of any great importance within the area of the Memoir. True, there are many mounds of sand and gravel in the moorland country to the west, but their situation is altogether too remote. In the lowlands sands are plentiful around Felton, and there is a 10-ft. face in an opening alongside the main road. Much sand and gravel is also taken from the river-beds and used as a top-dressing for roads.

     The upper boulder-clay, mostly reddish in colour, and generally fairly free from all but small stones, was once used to make roofing and draining tiles. The ruins of old tile works are to be seen here and there, especially along the eastern side of one-inch Sheet 9, but the industry is now quite extinct.

     Soil and Agriculture.— By far the greater proportion of the region is given over to pasture. What arable land there is lies in the strip of country east of the Great North Road, although even here much is under permanent pasture. Sheep-farming is universal over the moorland districts of the west, the 'black-face' variety being more common than the Cheviot breed.

     The alluvial flats along the Coquet, and to a lesser extent along the Font, are occasionally ploughed for turnips, potatoes and cereals.

      Water-supply.—Many of the isolated farms and cottages obtain their water from neighbouring springs. Rothbury gets its supply from White Park Well, a spring on the northern slopes of the Simonside Hills. A mile or more north-west of this, powerful springs issue from the foot of the escarpment, near Great Tosson ; these form part of the water-supply for Tynemouth Corporation, who also use the springs at the base of the Fell Sandstone in the Cartington district. All these springs are supplementary to the Corporation's undertaking on the southern slopes of the Simonside range, where the head-waters of the River Font are collected at the Font Storage Reservoir, with a capacity of 721,500,000 gallons. The watershed area above the dam is about 11 square miles, and the yearly average rainfall for the eleven years 1898 to 1908 was 34.61 inches.  In addition to supplying the coast resorts of Whitley Bay and Tynemouth the Corporation, serves many of the larger mining; districts of south-east Northumberland, including the town of Ashington.

      Longframlington has a rather unsatisfactory gravitation supply from a spring—Shirlah Well—on Longframlington Common, whilst the neighbouring village of Felton obtains most of its water from sand-deposits in the vicinity.
In the north-eastern region of the map the Amble Urban District Council supplies Amble and the Broomhill mining area from springs and borings in the Hazon district. The springs vary in yield from 6 to 25 gallons per minute, whilst the borings yield about 30 gallons per minute. Most of the water comes from the Great Limestone, and has a hardness about 19°. A boring at Hazon Lee has recently been made for an additional supply.

     The recently built village of Lynemouth, on the coast at the mouth of the River Lyne, derives its supply from Linton Colliery, where a feeder of water in the Yard seam is piped to the shaft-bottom, pumped to the surface and thence goes to a storage tank near Ellington Colliery.

      A boring for water (the 'Morpeth Water Bore') was put down quite recently (1932) at the instance of the Northumberland County Council, on the Cotting Burn, half a mile S.E. of Warreners House (North Gate). Starting near the base of the Millstone Grit the boring was continued to a depth of 80 fathoms, well into the Upper Limestone Group. The yield is about 80,000 gallons per day, most of this apparently coming from the Stanton Limestone.




      The following is a selection of important records, the majority hitherto unpublished. Notes in square brackets, and usually horizon-names also, are additions to the original documents.
(1) Hazon.
      Account of strata in a boring 300 yards N.W. of Hazon. Abridged from 'The Carboniferous Limestone Formation of the North of England' by Stanley Smith, M.Sc., F.G.S., P. 42. (North of England Institute of Mining Engineers, 1912).
      Thickness Depth
      Ft. In. Ft. In.
    Surface deposits 66 8 66 8
    Strata 8 6 75 2
    Coal 0 8 75 10
    Strata 37 10 113 8
    Coal 0 4 114 0
    Strata 26 4 140 4
    Coal 0 3 140 7
    Strata 6 10 147 5
    Coal 0 7 148 0
    Strata 37 6 185 6
    Coal 0 11 186 5
    Strata 57 10 244 3
    CUSHAT Limestone 3 8 247 11
    Strata 22 9 270 8
    Coal 0 6 271 2
    Strata 6 8 277 10
    Coal 0 2 278 0
    Strata 4 9 282 9
    Coal 0 2 282 11
    Strata 57 6 340 5
    Limestone 3 9 344 2
    Strata 9 0 353 2
    Limestone 4 3 357 5
    Strata 33 3 390 8
    GREAT LIMESTONE 35 6 426 2
    Strata 18 0 444 2
Blaes 0 2 442 4½
Coal 0 5 442 9½
Blaes 0 2 442 11½
Coal 0 8 443 7½
Stone 0 443 8
Coal 0 8½ 444 4½
    Strata 2 9 447
    Coal 0 11½ 448 1
    Strata 160 8 610 9
    Blaes 0 9 633 6
    Coal 0 4 633 10
    Strata 10 7 644 5
    Coal, parrot 0 4 644 9
    Strata 13 5 658 2
    Coal 0 9 658 11
    Strata 81 6 740 5
    SIX-YARD Limestone 16 7 757 0
    Limy blaes 0 6 757 6
    Coal 1 4 758 10
    Stone 0 0¾ 758 10¾
    Coal 0 4 759 2½
    Blaes 0 0¾ 759
    Coal 0 3 759
    Strata 11 5 770 11½
SHILBOTTLE   Coal 2 7 773
    Strata 26 10 800 4½
    Coal 0 3 800
    Strata 13 6 814
    Coal 0 6 814 7½
    Strata 57 10 872 5½
    EELWELL Limestone 26 9 899 2½
    Strata 52 4 951
    Limestone 1 5 952 11½
    Coal 0 10 953
Blaes 0 1 953 10½
    Brassy stone and coal 0 7½ 954 6
    Strata 53 0 1007 6
    Coal 0 11 1008 5
    Strata 32 10 1041 3
    Coal 0 5 1041 8
    Blaes 0 4 1042 0
    Coal 0 1 1042 1
    Blaes 5 7 1047 8
BEADNELL   Coal 1 5 1049 1
Blaes 0 1 1049 2
Coal 0 2 1049 4
Blaes 0 7 1049 11
Coal 0 6½ 1050 5½
Blaes 0 8½ 1051 2
Coal and blaes 0 1 1051 3
Coal 1 0 1052 3
Coal and blaes 1 2½ 1053 5½
    Strata 15 0 1058 5½



(2) Hazon Lee
       Core-boring for water commenced August 1933 at Hazon Lee, for Amble Urban District Council. Notes on the cores are given within square brackets. Examination of core by permission of W. Burton, Esq., Surveyor, Amble U.D.C.
      Thickness Depth
      Ft. In. Ft. In.
    Soil 1 0 1 0
    Brown stony clay 4 6 5 6
    Sand and stones 1 3 6 9
    Blue clay with boulders 7 3 14 0
    Loamy sand 1 4 15 4
    Brown stony clay 1 2 16 6
    Sandstone ramble 1 3 17 9
    Dark grey shale with sand-
stone partings
5 2 22 11
    Brown clay with small stones 0 5 23 4
    Sandstone 7 2 30 6
    Soft dark shale with sand-
stone partings
6 4 36 10
    Brown and yellow sandstone 3 8 40 6
    Dark shale with sandstone
8 0 48 6
    Sandstone with shale partings 19 0 67 6
    Sandstone [casts o f shells
near base]
15 0 82 6
    Sandstone with shale partings 11 0 93 6
    Dark-grey shale with thin
sandstone partings
16 9 110 3
    Grey sandstone [HAZON
position at base]
3 1 13 3
    Shale with ironstone nodules and thin sandstone girdles 7 9 121 0
    Dark shale with ironstone
11 3 132 3
    Sandstone with ironstone
nodules and shale partings
23 3 155 6
    Dark shale with ironstone
nodules [shells at base]
15 3 170 9
    Grey sandstone 20 1 190 10
    Dark shale, iron-stone nodules
and coal trace
3 0 193 10
    Grey sandstone 11 2 205 0
    Dark shale 4 0 209 0
    Shell-bed 1 0 210 0
    Limestone [with gastropods and
a few crinoid ossicles]
1 0 211 0
    Dark shale with sandstone girdles 7 0 218 0
    Hard grey sandstone 3 0 221 0
    Dark shale with sandstone girdles 3 2 224 2
    Dark shale [with impure limestone ribs, crinoid ossicles and shells] 5 10 230 0
    Sandstone with thin shale partings 34 0 264 0
    Grey shale with limestone nodules and thin sandstone girdles 20 0 284 0
    Shale with limestone nodules and sandstone girdles [shells at base] 22 0 310 0
    Seggar 2 4 313 6
    Sandstone with shale partings 25 6 339 0
    Grey sandstone 30 3 369 3
    Shale with limestone nodules 8 2 377 5
    Limestone 2 10 380 3
    Shale with limestone nodules
[with crinoids and shells]
3 5 383 8
    Limestone with shale partings 2 0 385 8
    Shale with limestone nodules 3 6 389 2
    Limestone 2 9 391 11
    Shale with limestone nodules and sandstone girdles 28 1 420 0
    Dark shale with shells 6 0 426 0
    GREAT Limestone 33 0 459 0
    Dark-grey shale 11 4 470 4
    Dark-grey shale with shells 1 0 471 4
    Dark-grey shale 2 6 473 10
    Coal 0 8 474 6
    Grey sandstone 15 3 489 9
    Coal 5"
Brass ½"
Black stone ½"
0 6 490 3
    Strong sandy seggar 1 6 491 9
    Grey sandstone 3 0 494 9
    Dark-grey shale   3 495 0
    Grey sandstone [Coarse and gritty; the DUNSTANBURGH SANDSTONE] 48 0 543 0
    Grey sandstone with shale part-
34 0 577 0



(3) Morpeth Water Bore
      Core-boring for water (1932), on the Cotting Burn, ½ mile south-east of Warreners House (North Gate), for the Northumberland County Council. Communicated by Messrs. D. Balfour and Sons, Civil Engineers, Newcastle-on-Tyne. Notes on the cores are given within square brackets.
    Thickness Depth
    Ft. In. Ft. In.
  Soil 1 0 1 0
  Yellow clay 4 9 5 9
  Sand 0 6 6 3
  Blue clay and boulders 47 9 54 0
  Stone and clay bands 18 0 72 0
  Gritstone [coarse, pebbly grit] 15 0 87 0
  Sandy shale 3 0 90 0
  Ganister 3 0 93 0
  Soft shale 15 0 108 0
  Coal 0 6 108 6
  Soft shale 11 6 120 0
  Shaly sandstone 8 6 128 6
  Shale 2 0 130 6
  Fine gritstone 3 0 133 6
  Banded sandy shale 4 0 137 6
  Fine gritstone 1 0 138 6
  Hard shale 4 0 142 6
  Shaly sandstone 4 0 146 6
  Shale 4 0 150 6
  Coal 1 9 152 3
  Banded sandy shale 6 9 159 0
  Soft shale [Nebraskan Bed] 6 0 165 0
  Fine sandy shale 6 0 171 0
  Hard and soft shales 39 0 210 0
  Fine gritstone [fine-grained white sandstone] 40 0 250 0
  Black shales 22 0 272 0
  PIGDON Limestone 28 0 300 0
  Fine white streaky gritstone 13 0 313 0
  Dark shale 4 0 317 0
  Fine white gritstone 21 0 338 0
  Fine streaky gritstone 30 6 368 6
  Dark-grey shale 6 0 374 6
  Fine black mudstone 1 6 376 0
  Gritty shales 9 0 385 0
  Shaly gritstone 16 0 401 0
  Shaly gritstone with bands of shale 16 6 417 6
  Micaceous gritstone 3 0 420 6
  Gritstone 10 6 431 0
  Gritstone with coal parting 11 6 442 6
  Black shale 11 0 453 6
  Gritstone with coal partings 11 0 464 6
  Black shale 10 0 474 6
  Hard rock 2 6 477 0
  Black shale [crinoids and shells towards base] 3 6 480 6
  STANTON [Upper Post] Limestone 2 0 482 6
  Shale 19 0 501 6
  Hard shale [crinoidal] 3 6 505 0
  STANTON [Main Post] Limestone 11 6 516 6
  Fireclay 4 8 521 2
  Gritstone 16 0 537 2
  Shale 4 0 541 2
  Hard shaly grit 2 0 543 2



(4) Cottingwood Common
Shaft of West Cottingwood Colliery, situated on the west bank of the How Burn, about 620 yards S.S.W. of Pegswood Moor farm.
    Thickness Depth
    Ft. In. Ft. In.
  Clay and loam (approx.) 25 6 25 6
  Metal, blue 3 0 28 6
  Band 1 6 30 0
  BANDY COAL, no thickness given, say 2 6 32 6
  Band 1 6 34 0
  Seggar 3 0 37 0
  Blue 12 0 49 0
  Freestone 50 0 99 0
  BROCKWELL COAL 2 0 101 0
  Seggar 15 0 116 0
  Blue metal 30 0 146 0
  Freestone 21 0 167 0
  VICTORIA COAL 1 9 168 9 least 6 0 174 9
 Northern pit is the upcast shaft : 99 feet to the Brockwell Coal, dip 1 in 10.
Downcast shaft, 168 feet to Victoria Coal.
Surface of downcast shaft, 155.44 feet above sea-level.


(5) Pegswood Moor
No. 1 shaft, Morpeth Moor Colliery, 700 yards S.S.E. of Pegswood Moor. Surface level 196 feet above O.D.
      Thickness Depth
      Ft. In. Ft. In.
    Strong blue clay 15 6 15 6
    Sand, clay and rubble 6 0 21 6
    Grey post 3 6 25 0
    Coal 0 8 25 8
    Seggar clay 5 8 31 4
    Whin panel 1 3 32 7
    Coarse seggar 0 8 33 3
    Strong white post 1 9 35 0
    Hard grey post 2 6 37 6
    Hard white post 3 3 40 9
    Mild post 5 0 45 9
    Coal 1 6 47 3
    Seggar 5 9 53 0
    Ironstone 0 6 53 6
    Post panel 1 0 54 6
    Blue metal 0 9 55 3
    Post panel 1 0 56 3
    Blue metal 3 5 59 8
    Coal 0 10 60 6
    Seggar 2 11 63 5
    Grey post 4 7 68 0
    Hard blue metal 2 0 70 0
    Coal 1 0 71 0
    Seggar 5 0 76 0
    Freestone 30 0 106 0
    Coal 0 3 106 3
    Seggar 2 5 108 8
HARVEY of PEGSWOOD   Coal 2 11 111 7
    Seggar 6 5 118 0
    Post 4 6 122 6
    Whinstone 1 6 124 0
    Grey post 2 0 126 0
    Blue metal 2 6 128 6
    Coal 0 4 128 10
    Seggar 0 8 129 6
    Post 3 6 133 0
    Grey metal 9 0 142 0
    Grey post 7 0 149 0
    Blue metal 2 0 151 0
    Black shale 0 4 151 4
OLD MAN COAL   Coal 0 3 151 7
Seggar band 0 3 151 10
Coal 2 5 154 3
    Seggar 3 3 157 6
    Coal 0 3 157 9
    Post 3 7 161 4
    Black shale 0 8 162 0
LITTLE    Coal 2 0 164 0
    Seggar 5 6 169 6
    Post 36 6 206 0
    Blue metal 2 9 208 9
    Coal 0 2 208 11
    Blue metal 3 7 212 6
    Seggar and post 1 6 214 0
    Post 7 6 221 6
    Post and blue metal 1 6 223 0
    Blue metal 5 0 228 0
    Post 6 3 234 3
    Blue metal 2 0 236 3
BANDY    Coal 3 0 239 3
    Post and grey metal 32 0 271 3
    Post 34 0 305 3
BROCKWELL   Coal 2 3 307 6



(6) Lynemouth
Boring for coal on north bank of the River Lyne, 407 yards S. of Dean House. Surface level 151 ft. above O.D. Communicated by J. J. Hall, Esq., Ashington Coal Company.
      Thickness Depth
      Ft. In. Ft. In.
    Sand 4 11 4 11
    Sandstone rubble 4 5 9 4
    Strata 17 8 27 0
    Coal 0 5 27 5
    Seggar 1 0 28 5
    Mild grey post 19 7 48 0
    Hard grey post 0 4 48 4
    Ironstone 0 10 49 2
    Soft grey shale band 0 1 49 3
    Red and grey post 17 7 66 10
    Grey post 9 4 76 2
    Grey post with red band 36 6 112 0
    Red and grey shale with red
4 4 117 0
    Dark-grey shale 5 5 122 5
    Strata 31 4 153 9
    Coal 0 6 154 3
    Strata 9 8 163 11
    Coarse coal with splint partings 0 9 164 8
    Strata 36 4 201 0
    Shell-bed 0 7 201 7
    Coal 0 7 202 2
    Strata 24 11 227 1
    Coal 1 0 228 1
    Strata 21 11 250 0
    Coal, coarse 0 4 250 4
    Strata 14 5 264 9
BLACKCLOSE   Coal 0 4 265 1
Black seggar with coal-threads 0 2 265 3
Coal with thin splint partings 1 7 266 10
    Strata 106 0 372 10
    Coal 0 2 373 0
    Coarse coal 0 1 373 1
    Shell-bed 0 0½ 373 1½
    Coarse coal with blackstone partings 0 2½ 373 4
    Strata 10 8 384 0
  Dark shale with shells and iron- stone bands 16 4 400 4
    Coarse coal 0 3 400 7
    Strata 39 7 439 7
  Coarse coal 0 3 439 10
Coal with splint partings 2 8 442 6
Dark seggar 0 2 442 8
Coal with splint
0 9 443 5
    Strata 32 1 475 6
    Coal with blackstone partings 2 8 478 2
    Blackstone 0 478
    Seggar band 0 3 478 5½
    Blackstone with coal
0 2 478
    Coal 1 0 479
    Blackstone and coal 0 480 0
    Coal 0 2 480 2
    Blackstone with coal threads 0 1 480 3
    Dark seggar 0 1½ 480
    Blackstone with coal threads 0 480 6
    Strata 48 3 528 9
MAIN   Coarse coal 0 6 529 3
Blackstone with coal threads 0 4 529 7
Coal with blackstone pipings 2 0 531 7
Blackstone 0 1½ 531 8½
Coal 1 5 533 1½
Dark seggar with coal threads 0 3½ 533 5
Coal 0 4 533 9
Dark seggar with coal threads 1 10 535 7
Coarse coal with blackstone partings 1 8 537 3
Dark seggar 0 7 537 10
Coarse coal 1 3 539 1
    Grey and dark shale with coal partings 4 3 543 4
    Coarse coal 0 4 543 8
    Coarse coal, blackstone partings 0 1 543 9
    Blackstone with coal threads 0 2½ 543 11½
    Coarse coal with blackstone partings 0 1½ 544 1
    Strata 14 2 558 3
    Coal 0 6 558 9
    Blackstone with coal partings 0 2 558 11
    Blackstone 0 4 559 3
    Coarse coal 0 1 559 4
    Coal 0 4 559 8
    Blackstone with coal partings and pyrites 1 560 8½
    Coarse coal 0 1 560 9½
    Coal 0 9½ 561 7
    Strata 42 11 604 6
YARD   Coal 3 10½ 608 4½
Blackstone with coal threads 0 3½ 608 8
Coal 0 2½ 608 10½
Blackstone with coal threads 0 6 609 4½
Coal 0 0¼ 609 4¾
Blackstone with coal threads 0 5 609 9
 Coarse coal 0 0¾ 609 10½
Blackstone 0 0½ 609 11
    Strata 5 2 615 1
    Coarse coal 0 10 615 11
    Strata 21 7 637 6



(7) Hemscott Hill North
At the south end of Druridge Bay and on the north side of the Grange Wood Fault, 630 yards east-south-east of the deep Druridge Bore and about 330 yards N. by E. of Hemscott Hill (1925). Surface level 14 ft. above O.D. Notes on the cores within square brackets. Communicated by J. J. Hall Esq., Ashington Coal Company.
      Thickness Depth
      Ft. In. Ft. In.
    Surface clay, etc 21 6 21 6
    Soft grey shale 0 10 22 4
    Blackstone 0 2 22 6
MAIN   Coal 2 7 25 1
 Seggar 1 26
Coal 0 6 26 9½
Dark seggar 0 9 27 6½
Coal 1 0½ 28 7
    Grey shale with ironstone and thin post girdles 7 5 36 0
    Coal 1 5 37 5
    Dark seggar 0 4 37 9
    Coal 1 5 39 2
    Grey and dark seggar with coal threads 1 10 41 0
    Seggar with ironstone nodules 2 0 43 0
    Grey shale with ironstone nodules 3 5 46 5
    Coal 0 2½ 46 7½
    Dark seggar with coal threads 0 10½ 47 6
    Coal 0 47
    Dark seggar with coal threads 1 48 1
    Coal 0 3 48 4
    Seggar 0 1 48 5
    Coal 0 10 49 3
    Dark seggar with coal threads 1 0 50 3
    Seggar 0 9 51 0
    Strata 48 0 99 0
YARD   Coal 0 9½ 99 9½
Dark seggar 0 8½ 100 6
Coal 0 3 100 9
Dark seggar, coal traces 1 7 102 4
Coal 1 2½ 103 6½
Blackstone 0 2 103 8½
Coal 1 11½ 105 8
    Strata 17 1 122 9
    Coal 0 11½ 123 8½
    Seggar 4 3½ 128 0
    Dark-grey post 3 6 131 6
    Grey post 49 0 180 6
Coal 2 7 183 1
    Seggar 1 7 184 8
    Grey shale with ironstone nodules and thin post partings 4 4 189 0
    Grey post with shale partings 7 8 196 8
    Dark shale 1 8 198 4
  Coal 1 2½ 199 6½
    Seggar 0 3½ 199 10
    Soft dark shale with coal traces 0 10 200 8
    Seggar with ironstone nodules 1 7 202 3
    Dark and grey post 6 10 209 1
    Grey shales with ironstone bands : [shells at top] 14 0 223 1
    Grey shale and post girdles :
[shells at base]
7 4 230 5
  Coal 1 3 231 8
Dark seggar   7 232 3
Coal 0 6 232 9
    Seggar 2 5 235 2
    Grey shale and post girdles 8 4 243 6
    Grey shale with ironstone bands [shells at base] 8 11 252 5
    Coal 1 6 253 11
    Splint coal   1 254 0
    Seggar   2½ 254 2½
    Coal   6½ 254 9
    Strata 59 5 314 2
    Grey and dark grey post with coal traces 2 6 316 8
    Post 0 9 317 5
    Grey and dark grey post with
coal traces
1 8 319 1
    Post 0 9 319 10
    Coarse coal and seggar 0 6 320 4
    Seggar 2 8 323 0
    Grey shale 18 0 341 0
  Grey shale
 [with shells]
1 0 342 0
    Strata 7 9 349 9
PLESSEY   Coarse coal and splint 0 11 350 8
    Strata 107 6 458 2
    Grey and dark shale with shells 7 3 465 5
    Strata 51 4 516 9
BEAUMONT   Coal 1 8 518 5
    Strata 12 6 530 11
    Coal 0 9 531 8
    Strata 17 11 549 7
    Coal 0 8 550 3
    Blackstone 0 1 550 4
    Strata 14 11 565 3
  Coal 1 3 566 6
Seggar with coal threads   2 566 8
Coal   4 567 0
    Strata 9 8 576 8
    Grey and dark-grey post (mild)
[medium-grained to coarse]
30 4 607 0
    Hard false post 2 0 690 0
    Strata 20 1 629 1
? WIDDRINGTON FIVE-QUARTER   Coal with splint 2 2 631 3
Seggar 0 5½ 631 8½
Coal 0 3½ 632 0
    Seggar 1 4 633 4
    Grey shale with post girdles 3 7 636 11
    Coal and splint 0 5 637 4
    Seggar 1 2½ 638 6½
    Coal and splint 0 4½ 638 11
    Strata 22 5 661 4
    Soft coarse sandstone 3 6 664 10
    Strong seggar with ironstone nodules 2 8 667 6
    Coal 1 2 668 8
    Strata 7 3 675 11
    Coal 0 5½ 676 4½
    Splint Coal 0 1 676 5½
    Coal 0 3½ 676 9
    Strata 14 10 691 7
    Coal 1 11 693 6
    Dark seggar 2 8 696 2
    Coal   5 696 7
    Strata 26 7 723 2
    Coal   5 723 7
    Strata 15 5 739 0
    Coal with splint   10½ 739 10½
    Strata 40 780 0
    Coal   3 780 3
    Strata 19 1 799 4
BROCKWELL   Coal 1 10 801 2
    Seggar 8 1 809 3
    Grey post [mostly a greyish-white  coarse, pebbly sand-
stone or grit]
62 10 872 1
    Dark-grey shale 4 10 876 11
    Grey post,  into 23 1 90 0



(8) Low Hauxley
      Boring for electric cable at Low Hauxley (August, 1931). Notes on the cores within square brackets. Communicated by Major Morison, of Broomhill Collieries, Ltd.
       Thickness Depth
      Ft. In. Ft. In.
    Made ground, ashes, etc. 3 0 3 0
    Loamy soil–sand 1 4 4 4
  Peat with traces of decayed
1 8 6 0
  Soft grey and yellow clay, traces of decayed timber 0 11 6 11
    Brown stony clay 12 3 19 2
    Brown stony clay with thin sand partings 1 8 20 10
    Dark-brown stony clay 5 5 26 3
    Coal 1 1 27 4
    Dark seggar 1 3 28 7
    Grey shale with thin post girdles
and ironstone nodules
20 7 49 2
    Grey shale 9 4 58 6
    Dark grey shale 0 58 7½
RADCLIFFE   Coal and splint 0 1½ 58 9
Coal 5 2 63 11
Blackstone and coal 0 1 64 0
    Light-grey seggar 4 5 68 5
    Light-grey shale 48 6 116 11
    Dark- grey shale 1 2 118 1
    Coal 1 2 119 3
    Ironstone   5 119 8
    Soft seggar   4 120 0
    Grey shale with thin post girdles 6 1 126 1
    Grey post with hard panel 26 2 152 3
    Grey and dark-grey post 6 4 158 7
    Grey and dark-grey shale with post girdles and ironstone nodules 17 11 176 6
    Dark-grey shale 0 5 176 11
ALBERT   Coal 1 2 178 1
Dark shale [with shells] 0 4 178 5
Coal 1 4 179 9
Blackstone with coal threads 0 4 180 1
Coal 1 10 181 11
Splint and coal   1 182 0
Coal   3 182 3
    Grey shale with post girdles and
ironstone nodules
13 10 196 1
    Grey shale 5 3 201 4
    Red and grey shale 2 10 204 2
    Grey shale with ironstone nodules 6 11 211 1
    Coal   9 211 10
    Grey post with shale partings 8 7 220 5
    False post [a, pale cream coloured, hard, fine grained sandstone] 2 11 223 4
    Yellow and grey post with shale
8 8 232 0
    Yellow and grey post, hard 5 0 237 0
    Grey post 5 5 242 5
    Light-grey post, coarse 6 11 249 4
Coal 2 3 251 7
Splint coal 0 7 252 2
    Dark seggar   2 252 4
    Strong seggar 1 0 253 4
    Grey shale with thin post girdles and ironstone nodules 3 5 256 9
    Grey post with shale partings 8 7 265 4
    Grey and dark-grey shale with thin post girdles [Spirorbis and  fish remains] 9 1 274 5
LITTLE WONDER   Coal 1 0 275 5
    Seggar 0 10 276 3
    Grey and dark shale with ironstone nodules 6 6 282 9
    Grey shale with post girdles [shells in centre] 22 11 305 8
    Coal 0 2 305 10
    Black shale with coal threads
0 6 306 4
    Coal 0 7 306 11
    Strong seggar 0 1 308 0
    Grey shale with thin post girdles
[shell fragments at base]
20 9 328 9
PRINCESS   Coal   1½ 328 10½
Grey shale   8½ 329 7
 Coal 2 7 332 2
    Dark seggar   6 332 8




(9) Broomhill Deep Bore
Boring for coal mile S.E. of Morwick. Abridged from 'The Carboniferous Limestone Formation of the North of England,' by Stanley Smith, M.Sc., F.G.S., p. 44: (North of England Institute of Alining Engineers, 1912). Some of the cores were still available for inspection during the re-survey of 1932. Notes on them are given in square brackets.
      Thickness Depth
      Ft. In. Ft. In.
    Surface 11 6 11 6
    Post 18 3 29 9
    Coal 0 1 29 10
    Fireclay 5 1 34 11
    Coal 2 9 37 8
    Strata 7 3 44 11
    Coal 0 5 45 4
    Strata 12 4 57 8
    Coal 0 10 58 6
    Strata 34 0 92 6
    Coal 3 0 95 6
    Grey and blue metal 9 2 104 8
    Fireclay 0 8 105 4
    Post [coarse, pebbly grit] 47 4 152 8
    Blue metal 0 3 152 11
    Post [coarse, pebbly grit] 55 5 208 4
    Strata 4 6 212 10
    Coal 0 11 213 9
    Strata 33 4 247 1
    Coal 0 4 247 5
    Strata 57 11 305 4
    Coal 0 6 305 10
    Strata 15 2 331 0
    Coal 1 6 332 6
    Grey metal and stone 0 1 332 7
    Coal 0 3 332 10
    Strata [mostly coarse, pebbly grits] 362 7 695 5
    Coal 1 3 696 8
    Grey metal 0 1 696 9
    Coal 0 5 697 2
    Strata 10 4 707 6
    Coal 0 8 708 2
    Strata 30 3 738 5
    Coal 0 4 738 9
    Strata 30 8 769 5
    Blue metal [marine shells throughout] 23 6 792 11
    Limy blue metal [marine
shells throughout]
27 6 820 5
    Limestone 2 0 822 5
    Limy blue metal 1 9 824 2
    Limestone 1 4 824 6
    Limy blue metal 0 4 824 10
    Blue metal 3 4 828 2
    Coal with yellow stone in it 0 9 828 11
    Strata 3 2 832 1
    Post [sandstone] 6 11 839 0
    Grey metal and post   6 839 6
    Post [coarse sandstone in parts] 34 0 873 6
    Strata 29 6 903 0
    Limestone, with ' horn-corals ' 3 1 906 1
    Strata 72 11 979 0
    Limestone with Productus 9 0 988 0
    Strata 2 7 990 7
    Post [mostly felspathic grit with quartz pebbles] 49 4 1039 11
    Blue metal 2 3 1042 2
Shaly limestone-with Producti and corals   Limestone   3 1042 5
Limy blue metal 6 8 1049 1
Limestone 2 9 1051 10
Limy grey metal 2 4 1054 2
    Strata 130 1 1184 3
    Blue metal [with Lingula] 8 11 1193 2
    Coal   2 1193 4
    Strata 11 8 1205 0
    Coal   6 1205 6
    Strata 9 3 1214 9
    Coal   7 1215 4
    Strata 66 6 1281 10
    Limestone : a highly crystalline limestone, with brachiopods 10 9 1292 7
    Grey metal and post 2 1 1294 8
    Coal 1 2 1295 10
    Blue metal 3 4 1299 2
    Coal   8 1299 10
    Strata 33 9 1333 7
    Limestone 5 6 1339 1
    Strata 43 3 1382 4
    Coal   5 1382 9
    Strata 21 2 1403 11
    Limy blue metal [with marine shells] 2 7 1406 6
    Strata 11 6 1418 0
    Limy blue metal [with marine shells]   9 1419 9
    Strata 77 6 1497 3
    Limestone 10 1 1507 4
    Strata 31 5 1538 9
    Limestone 2 3 1541 0
    Strata 75 8 1616 8
  Limestone 7 4 1624 0
Strata 9 2 1633 2
Limestone 4 3 1637 5
    Strata 45 3 1682 8
GREAT LIMESTONE   dark limestone containing corals shells and encrinite ossicles 22 10 1705 6
    Strata 27 6 1733 0
TOP COAL(TOWNHEAD of Shilbottle)   Coal 0 3 1733 3
Blue metal 0 1 1733 4
Coal 1 2 1734 6
Coaly blue metal 0 2 1734 8
Coal 0 3 1734 11
    Strata 1 3 1736 2
    Coal 1 4 1737 6
    Blue metal 0 4 1737 10
    Coal 0 3 1738 1
    Strata 116 11 1855 0
EIGHT YARD   Limestone 18 9 1873 9
    Strata 10 0 1883 9
    Coal, parrot 0 4 1884 1
    Strata 78 3 1962 4
  Limy blue metal and balls 5 0 1967 4
SIX YARD   Limestone 1 2 1968 6
    Limy blue metal 2 9 1971 3
    Limestone 16 2 1987 5
    Coal 0 2 1987 7
    Strata 41 6 2029 1
SHILBOTTLE   Coal 1 11½ 2031
    Strata 27 7 2058 8


Appendix II
List of Geological Survey Photographs in 1-in Sheet 9*
4502.—Gorge in Fell Sandstone. Thrum Mill, Rothbury.
4503.—Algal reef in Glebe Limestone, Cementstone Group. The Glebe, 1 mile S.S.W. of Rothbury.
4504.—Same, as 4503, close up.
4505.—Outlet of glacial channel, Selby's Cove, Simsonside Hills, 2 miles S. by W. of Great Tosson.
4506.—Intake of glacial channel, Selby's Cove.
4507.—Ridge of glacial gravel, Blanch Burn, 2 mile N. by E. of Fallowlees.
4508.—Section of glacial gravel ridge. Blanch Burn, 1,200 yards N. by E. of Fallowlees.
4509.—Rothbury and the Simsonside Escarpments.
4510.—The Beacon, Simsonside Hills, Lordenshaw.
4511.—Simsonside Hills from the south. Selby's Cove at left centre.
4512-4513.—Simsonside Hills and Garleigh Crags (right of picture) from the south.
4514.—Garleigh Crags from the north.
4515.—Columnar face of Whin Sill. Ewesley Quarries, 1 mile N. of Ewesley Station.
4516.—Same as 4515, near view.
4517.—Great Limestone and covering beds, Whitehouse Quarries, Ritton White House.
4518.—Intake of Haredene glacial channel, 500 yards N.N.W. of Haredene.
4510.—Rothley Crags. Rothley.
4520.—Massive bed of pebbly sandstone. Rothley Crags, looking south.
4521.—As 4520, looking north.
4522.—False-bedding in sandstone, Rothley Crags.
4523.—Outlet of Millstone Cleugh glacial channel, 3 miles N. by W. of Longframlington.
4521 and 4525.—Intake of Millstone Cleugh, Wellhope, miles N. byW. of Longframlington.
* Copies of these half-plate photographs are deposited for reference in the offices of the Geological Survey (Exhibition Road, South Kensington, London, S.W.7, and Southpark, 19, Grange Terrace, Edinburgh). Prints and lantern slides are supplied at a fixed tariff.


Published by the Geological Survey and Museum, Exhibition Road, South Kensington, London, S.W.7
      Coloured Uncoloured
      s. d. s. d.
Geological Map of the British Islands        
     Scale, 25 miles to the inch, second edition colour printed (1912, Reprinted 1924) 2 0 1 0
    Uncoloured copies showing the Sheets on the Quarter-inch and One-inch Scales, with parti- culars of Memoirs, Maps, Sections, &c., printed on back     1 0
Quarter-inch Geological Map of England and Wales Solid Edition   PRICE  
    (A quarter of an inch to one mile, colour-printed)   s. d.  
    Sheet 1 with 2. Alnwick, Berwick, etc. (1907)   3 0  
    Sheet 3.—Carlisle, Keswick, etc. (1907)   3 0  
    Sheet 4.—Newcastle-on-Tyne, Stockton, etc. (1907)   3 0  
One-inch Geological Map of England and Wales        
    (One inch to one mile)   PRICE  
    Revised Survey (Colour-printed)        
  NEW SERIES s. d. s. d.
    Sheet 1.—Norham (Solid, 1925 ; Drift, 1926) 2 0 2 0
    Sheet 2.—Berwick-on-Tweed (Solid, 1925 ; Drift, 1926) 2 0 2 0
    Sheet 3. —Ford (Solid and Drift editions, 1932) 2 0 2 0
    Sheet 4. —Holy Island (Solid, 1925 ; Drift, 1926) 2 0 2 0
    Sheet 5. —Cheviot (Drift edition, 1932) 2 0
    Sheet 6. —Alnwick (Solid and Drift editions, 1930) 2 0 2 0
    Sheet 9. —Rothbury (Solid and Drift editions, 1934) 2 0 2 0
    Sheet 10.—Newbiggin (Solid and Drift editions, 1934) 2 0 2 0
    Sheet 18.—Brampton (Solid, 1930 ; Drift, 1931) 2 0 2 0
    Original Survey (Hand-coloured)        
OLD SERIES    NEW SERIES s. d. s. d.
Sheet 96 N.W.   (Sheet 42).—Northallerton, part of Cleveland Hills, Stokesley (1883) 9 0 *2 0
Sheet 102 N.E.   (Sheet 25). Alston, Weardale (1883) 10 0 10 0
Sheet 102 S.E.   (Sheet 31).—Middleton-in-Teesdale, Brough, Warcop (1893) 10 0 10 0
Sheet 103 N.W.   (Sheet 26).—Bishop Auckland, Wolsingham (1889) 6 0 7 6
      * Colour-printed.
Sheet 103 N.E.   (Sheet 27).—Durham, Hartlepool (1889) 4 6 5 3
Sheet 103 S.W.   (Sheet 32).—Staindrop, Barnard Castle,Bowes, West Auckland (1883) 8 3 8 3
Sheet 103 S.E.   (Sheet 33). Stockton, Darlington, Middlesbrough, Yarm (1882) 5 3 *2 0
Sheet 105 N.W.   (Sheet 14).—Morpeth, Bedlington, South Gosforth, Kirkwhelpington (1892) 6 9 6 9
Sheet 105 N.E.   (Sheet 15).—Coast near Blyth to Tynemouth and North Shields (1881) 2 0 2 0
Sheet 105 S.W.   (Sheet 20).—Newcastle, Gateshead, Corbridge (1892) 6 9 9 0
Sheet 105 S.E.   (Sheet 21).—Coast from South Shields to Seaham Harbour, Sunderland (1882) 3 9 3 9
Sheet 106 N.W.   (Sheet 12).—Bewcastle, Kirkcambeck, and part of the Border (1889) 6 9 9 0
Sheet 106 N.E.   (Sheet 13).—Bellingham, Chollerton (1883) 9 9 10 0
Sheet 106 S.E.   (Sheet 19). Hexham, Allendale, Haltwhistle (1883) 6 9 9 9
Sheet 108 N.E.   (Sheet 5).—Part of the Cheviots (English side) (1888) 6 9
Sheet 108 S.W.   (Sheet 7).—Plashetts, Kielder, part of Cheviots (1888) 3 3 4 3
Sheet 108 S.E.   (Sheet 8).—Otterburn, Elsdon, Harbottle(1889) 6 9 10 0
        * Colour-printed.  




       Six-inch Sheets (Hand-coloured)
             (Six inches to one mile)
Of the six-inch maps contained in the New Series one-inch Sheets enumerated on p. vii, the following have been published hand-coloured, and some are issued in both a Drift and Solid Edition. Prices of these sheets may be obtained on application to the Director-General, Ordnance Survey, Southampton.

Revised Survey (1923-35)
Uncoloured copies with engraved geological lines, index and vertical section may be obtained from the Director-General, Ordnance Survey, Southampton, and any agent for the sale of Ordnance Survey maps, price 2s. 3d. each.
4 N.W. Berwick - upon - Tweed (North) (1923)   21 S.E. Effingham. (1924).
4 S.W Berwick - upon - Tweed. (1923)   22 N.W. Fleetham. (1924).
6 N.E. Thornton. (1925).   22 N.E. Beadnell. (1925).
6 S.E. West Allerdean. (1925).   22 S.W. Brunton. (1924).
7 N.W. Scremerston. (1923).   22 S.E. Newton by the Sea. (1923).
7 S.W. Ancroft. (1925).   26 N.W. Bewick Moor. (1926).
8 S.W. Coves Haven. (1924).   26 N.E. North Charlton. (1926).
10 N.E. Lickar Moor. (1924).   26 S.W. Eglingham. (1927).
10 S.E. Ford. (1924).   26 S.E. South Charlton. (1926) .
11 N.W. Bowsden. (1923).   27 N.W. Fallodon. (1925).
11 N.E. Beal. (1923).   27 N.E. Embleton. (1925).
11 S.W. Lowick. (1923) .   27 S.W. Rennington. (1925).
11 S.E. West Kyloe. (1923) .   27 S.E. Craster. (1925).
15 N.W. Doddington North Moor. (1923).   32 N.W.  Broxfield. (1925).
15 N.E. Holborn Moss. (1924).   32 N.E. Howick. (1925).
15 S.W. Doddington. (1924).   32 S.E. Lesbury. (1927) .
15 S.E. South Hazelrigg. (1924).   37 N.E. Callaly. (1927).
16 N.W.  Middleton. (1925).   38 N.W. Edlingham. (1927).
16 N.E. Budle. (1925).   45 N.W. Franilington Gate. (1927).
16 S.W. Belford. (1925).   45 N.E. Swarland. (1926).
16 S.E. Bradford. (1924).   45 S.W. Longframlington. (1926).
17 S.W. and S.E. North Sunderland. (1925).   45 S.E. Weldon. (1927).
20 N.W. Wooler. (1924).   47 N.W. Hauxley. (1927) .
20 N.E. Chatton. (1924).   47 S.W. Togston Links. (1927).
20 S.E. Chillingham. (1924).   53 S.E. Ritton White House. (1926) .
21 N.W. Chatton Moor. (1924).   54 N.W. Wingates. (1926).
21 N.E. Lucker. (1925).   54 N.E. Linden. (1927) .
21 S.W. Rosebrough Moor. (1924).   54 S.W. Freeholders' Quarter.,(1926) .
New Meridian Sheets :-
These sheets are based on the Ordnance Survey maps issued between 1912 and 1922.
N. 6 N.E. Felkington. (1927).   N. 51 S.W. Eshott and Causey Park. (1931).
N. 6 S.E. Duddo. (1927).   N. 51 S.E. Widdrington. (1931).
N.10 N.E. Ford. (1928).   N. 52 N.W. Chevington Drift. (1931).
N.11 N.W. Bar Moor. (1928).   N. 52 S.W. Druridge. (1930).
N.28 N.E. Shipleyhill. (1929).   N. 58 N.E. Ewesley. (1930).
N. 29 N.W. Rock. (1929).   N. 58 S.E. Rothley Lakes. (1930).
N. 29 S.W. Denwick. (1929).   N. 59 N.W. Nunnykirk. (1930).
N. 29 S.E. Longhoughton. (1929).   N. 59 N.E. Longhorsley. (1930).
N. 33 S.E. Calialy. (1929).   N. 59 S.E. Stanton. (1930).
N. 34 N.E. Lemmington Hall. (1928).   N. 60 N.W. Earsdon. (1931).
N. 34 S.W. Edlingham. (1929).   N. 60 N.E. Ulgham. (1931).
N. 34 S.E. Edlingham Station. (1928).   N. 60 S.W. Hebron. (1932).
N. 35 N.W. Alnwick. (1929).   N. 60 S.E. Longhirst. (1932).
N. 35 N.E. Lesbury. (1929).   N. 61 N.W. Ellington. (1932).
N. 35 S.W. Shilbottle. (1929).   N. 61 S.W. Woodhorn. (1931).
N. 35 S.E. Alnmouth. (1928).   N. 61 S.E. Newbiggin Colliery. (1931).
N. 42 N.W. New Moor House. (1929).   N. 69 N.W. Morpeth. (1931).
N. 42 N.E. Shiel Dyke. (1929).   N. 69 N.E. Pegswood. (1932).
N. 42 S.E. Newmoor Hall. (1929).   N. 70 N.W. Ashington. (1932).
N. 43 N.W. Newton-on-the-Moor. (1928).   N. 70 N.E. Newbiggin-by-the-Sea. (1931)
N. 43 N.E. Warkworth. (1929).   N. 70 S.E. North Blyth. (1933).
N. 43 S.W. Swarland. (1929).   N. 78 S.W. Shankhouse. (1934).
N. 43 S.E. Acklington. (1928).   N. 78 S.E. Seaton Sluice. (1934).
N. 44 N.W. Amble. (1931).   N. 86 N.W. Seghill. (1934).
N. 44 S.W. Hauxley. (1931).   N. 86 N.W. Holywell. (1935).
N. 49 S.E. Blagdonburn. (1928).   N. 86 S.W. Killingworth. (1934).
N. 50 N.W. Pauperhaugh. (1927).   N. 86 S.E.  Murton. (1934).
N. 50 N.E. Longframlington.(1930).   N. 88 N.E. Thirlwall. (1929).
N. 50 S.W. Wingate. (1927).   N. 83 S.E. Blenkinsopp. (1930).
N. 50 S.E. Viewlaw. (1927).   N. 97 N.E. Featherstone. (1930).
N. 51 N.W. Felton. (1931).   N. 97 S.W. and S.E. Hartleyburn Common. (1929).
N. 51 N.E. South Broomhill. (1932).