Tuesday, 10 November 2009


I am not sure that this is actually straight forward industrial history but I thought it was so interesting people should know more about it. This is about Gilbert's Pit - a site of scientific interest in Charlton. I understand that a recent event was held in the Pit for the local great and good (and that's not me!) by the London Geodiversity Partnership and to show new plans which the council has for the area.
They say Gilbert's Pit as one of the most important geological sites in Britain. The industrial link to it is that the rock face has been revealed because it was a quarry connected to the local glass industry (and Charlton had the biggest glass works in Europe in the 1960s).
The new plans hope to connect the area round Gilbert's Pit with other local parks and open spaces - and to manage it in a way to show its geological importance and to give people access and information about this important site.
There is much of interest there - above the pit is the site of a Romano-British fort and there have been finds of pottery there. In the 18th century it was a semaphore station and later a Home Guard look out. The sand in the pit was used for brass mouldings in the Arsenal and later in the glass works.
The rock formations in the pit show older rocks on top of newer rocks - and this is a puzzle and one of the reasons it is interesting to geologists. The pit is described as a 'reference locality for geologists' giving insights to change in climate over 55 million years.
I realise this is a very brief outline of an important, and rather obscure, subject. There have been reports published on the site - and generally on geodiversity by Government and London Government sources and I am happy to put some references here if people ask for them.

1 comment:

peter luck said...

References? Yes please!