GEOLOGY GROUP SEES EVIDENCE OF ANCIENT EARTHQUAKE

A Crewkerne geology group were shown evidence of an ancient earthquake when they visited Wookey Hole caves. The 44 members of the group, which is part of Crewkerne U3A, were given a guided tour of the underground caverns by a young cave diver, who explained how the river Axe which flows through the limestone rocks had carved out the spectacular caverns, that have become a popular tourist attraction. Included in the tour was a visit to the 20th Chamber, called King Arthur’s Beard by the cave divers because of the fluted shape of a particular rock formation.

This is one of the caverns beneath the Mendips, recently opened to the public after major expansion, which created a new 70 metre long tunnel to provide access to previously unseen caves. A subterranean lake, evidence of an ancient earthquake and beautiful rock formations caused by periglacial meltwater erosion were found to be incredibly spectacular. Geology group leader Val Watson explained: “Exploration is still going on at Wookey Hole because new caves continue to be found.”

The October outing for the geology group also included a visit to the old paper mill buildings to see hand-made paper being produced. “Water from the river Axe filters through the rocks and is clean enough to be used in the process,” said Val. Together with Gerry Cottle of circus fame, Wookey Hole caves are co-owned by Managing Director Daniel Medley who is a former pupil of Val Watson at Maiden Beech Middle School, now Maiden Beech Academy, who will no doubt be pleased to know that Val gave the visit to Wookey Hole caves, ten out of ten.

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