Sunday, 25 November 2007

Old Town Railway Cutting

Tucked away a few minutes walk from the Old Town Gardens, this is one of Swindon's most fascinating little spots - it forms part of the Railway Walk which used to be the Wootton Bassett to Marlborough line.

The Old Town Railway Cutting rocks are between 155 and 145 million years old and date from the Jurassic seas which once covered Swindon. They comprise:
  • Swindon sand and stone - a yellow sandstone jutting out of the top of the rock face.
  • Cockly Bed - a knobbly limestone so called because it contains countless numbers of fossil cockle like shells. Formed on the great banks coating a shallow tropical sea floor.
  • Glauconite Beds - a sandy limestone, so called because it contains the microscopic mineral glauconite which gives a green colour to fresh surfaces. Laid down in the shallow warm sea about 150 million years ago.

Swindon Sand and Stone

Cockle Bed stone

The bridge over the railway cutting

The fresh water stream which bubbles out of the lime-stone rocks