Who are we?
The group was formed in 2004 to continue the work started in the 1970s by staff in the Manchester Museum as part of a national project to record local geological sites. We are a mix of amateur and professional geologists with different backgrounds. Many of the people currently involved are also members of the Manchester Geological Association which has supported the group in various ways for a number of years and currently host our website.
We are fortunate also to have the support of other local like-minded organisations, especially the GM Ecology Unit, or GM’s Bioconservation group, which assist us in processing sites through the GM planning system and store our site records. Support also comes from Natural England, British Geological Survey and GeoConservationUK, all bodies which co-ordinate and represent geoconservation groups nationally.
What do we do?
We have over 700 site records which are systematically being revisited. Each site, if it still exists, is assessed using national geoconservation criteria to see whether it is worthy of being designated as a Regionally Important Geological Site (RIGS) and given planning protection.
By running field trips and other public events, we aim to make local people more aware of the rocks we see all around us and how they were formed over millions of years ago. Some rocks also contain fossil remains of the wildlife which inhabited the Earth then. Hopefully, when people, especially children, know more about the rocks, they will also want to preserve this rich geoheritage for future generations.
Joining the group
Many of us bring local knowledge and connections to the group which helps with site assessment. Others have experience in taking field trips, writing about geology for the general public or are willing to help with site clearance. If this sort of activity is of interest and you would like to take part please contact us for further details.