10:30am Silchester Roman Town and Common
Meeting point - Car park for Silchester Roman site. Entrance off Wall Lane, Silchester SU 6358 6289, nearest post code RG7 2HJ.
This walk, led by Lesley Dunlop and Angela Houghton will last about 2.5 hours and the distance covered is approximately 3 miles on good footpaths.
In June 1900 the Geologists’ Association organised a visit to Silchester. They spent some time at the Roman walls and amphitheatre before going to Silchester Common to view the gravels present and some of the springs associated with the London Clay. The site lies on the Silchester Gravel and close to the boundary with the underlying London Clay.
This visit will cover some of the route to see what is visible over 100 years later. We will start at the Roman site and spend some time looking at this before walking over towards Silchester Common to the west.
10:30am A walk around Finchampstead Ridges – continuing our exploration of the south Berkshire border
Meeting point - Simon’s Wood Car Park (National Trust) SU 813 635. This is on the north side of the B3348, Wellingtonia Avenue. RG45 6AE
This walk, led by Lesley Dunlop, is about 3 miles (2 hours) on good footpaths and tracks, although there is a hill to go down and up at the start.
Finchampstead Ridges allow for panoramic views over Berkshire, Hampshire and Surrey. The Ridges itself, with views as far as the Hogsback Ridge in Surrey, is one of the National Trust’s oldest acquisitions, having been in their care for over 100 years. They lie on the higher ground of the Eocene beds of sands, clays and silts which are capped by a gravel bed. The Blackwater valley, which has been extensively worked for gravel, is to the south.
On this walk we will see evidence of the geology and the changes this makes to the scenery. There is evidence of gravel working on the hilltop and some springs and issues in the woodland where clay bands are encountered. Wellingtonia Avenue does have splendid trees of that type (Sequoia) planted in 1863 along the line of the Roman Road from London to Silchester which is also known as the Devil’s Highway.
10:30am Reading Abbey and Cemetery
Meeting point - TBA
Further details to follow.
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