Geology

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The surface of the Audlem area consists mainly of glacial deposits of clay, sand and gravel, known collectively as Drift. This originates from the Ice Age two million years ago when ice covered Britain as far south as the mouth of Severn and the River Thames. At the southern end of the ice, sand and gravel were washed out by melt water and this ultimately produced the typical mounds and ridges of the Cheshire Plain.

The general sequence of glacial deposits, in descending order is Upper Boulder Clay, Middle Sands and Lower Boulder Clay. The total thickness ranges from 20 to 100 metres. In the Audlem area, the general glacial sequence is well exposed in the Duckow and Weaver valleys, extending eastwards and southwards towards Adderley and beyond.

Around Kinsey Heath and to the east of Audlem the glacial deposits are flat lying and produce a gently rolling surface. The Upper and Lower Boulder Clay are dark grey in colour, weathering to brown, and separated by Middle Sand. The sandy nature of the deposits is indicated by the name Sandy Lane and are well displayed in the Holmes Bank just south of the village centre.

Exposures of Jurassic and Triassic rock are in scattered localities around Audlem. The Triassic rocks are mostly red marls and sandstones and the Jurassic strata are dark shales and mudstones. These rocks are exposed where rivers and streams have cut through the glacial cover.

The Triassic rocks were formed in a desert climate, with land locked lakes subject to periodic invasions by the sea, when rapid evaporation produced salt deposits. The presence of salt is evidenced by Brinepits Farm, to the north of Audlem.

The information in this section has been drawn from 'Audlem, The History of Cheshire Parish and its Five Townships', published in 1997 by The Local History Group