West Cornwall (2nd edition)

Geologists’ Association Guide No 31

By A Hill

This is one of GA’s little guides (see The Geology of Watchet and its Neighbourhood, Somerset, which is another example) to a very specific area. This one is West Cornwall, a holiday destination that I recently visited during which I spent some time looking at the geology, along with the gardens and archaeological sites.

It was a great visit and this is not surprising given that West Cornwall is a classic area of British geology as a result of its wide variety of igneous and metamorphic rocks, and its mineral deposits, especially tin and copper. In fact, no visit to West Cornwall would be complete without a visit to one of the historic mines that tourists can explore.

Indeed, this was one of the first parts of Britain to be studied geologically in details, and its main features were already known by the early part of the nineteenth century. However, as the author in West Cornwall points out, there are many important problems remaining to be solved, and there is considerable scope for further investigations.

The five itineraries set out in this guide cover all the prime localities in the region where these rocks can be examined, including:

  • Land’s End Peninsula.
  • Mount’s Bay.
  • St Agnes District.
  • Falmouth Bay.
  • The Lizard Peninsula.

West Cornwall, Guide No 31 (2nd edition), by A Hall, The Geologists’ Association, London (1994), 50 pages (paperback), ISBN: 0900717572

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