British Geological Survey

Founded in 1835, the British Geological Survey (BGS) is the world's oldest national geological survey. As a public sector organisation BGS is responsible for advising the UK government on all aspects of geoscience as well as providing impartial geological advice to industry, academia and the public.

Objective 1 (Theme 1)

Foster research

  • Geological Mapping
    BGS produce mapping of solid and superficial geology (1:50,000 flat sheets and a move towards emerging 3D mapping) and accompanying geological memoirs. Also, mapping of mineral occurrences and fossil localities, and BGS has developed a rock lexicon (dictionary) and classification scheme.

Objective 3 (Theme 2)

Demonstrate relevance to sustainable development

  • Links with English Heritage through Building Stone conservation
    The Strategic Stone Study (SSS), in partnership with English Heritage, was set up in response to a report to CLG on the ‘Planning for the Supply of Natural Building and Roofing Stone in England and Wales’. The SSS is aiming to increase the recognition of valuable building stone assets in active and disued quarries in LDPs to prevent sterilisation of potentially finite buidling/conservation resources.

Objective 4 (Theme 2)

Advocate design that enhances

  • Links with English Heritage through Building Stone conservation
    The Strategic Stone Study (SSS), in partnership with English Heritage, was set up in response to a report to CLG on the ‘Planning for the Supply of Natural Building and Roofing Stone in England and Wales’. The SSS is aiming to increase the recognition of valuable building stone assets in active and disued quarries in LDPs to prevent sterilisation of potentially finite buidling/conservation resources.

Objective 5 (Theme 3)

Establish audit

  • Geological Mapping
    BGS produce mapping of solid and superficial geology (1:50,000 flat sheets and a move towards emerging 3D mapping) and accompanying geological memoirs. Also, mapping of mineral occurrences and fossil localities, and BGS has developed a rock lexicon (dictionary) and classification scheme.

  • Involvement in the production of many LGAPs
    Involved in auditing geological and geomorphological sites and features of interest to form the evidence base for the promotion of geo-conservation activities at a regional and local level. BGS has undertaken audits to provide the baseline data for various local Geodiversity Actions Plans, including: Northumberland GAP; West Lothian Geodiversity Framework (GAP); Yorkshire Dales & Craven Lowlands GAP; County Durham Geodiversity Audit; advise on the framing of the North Pennines AONB GAP; Cheshire GAP and revision; Hereford & Worcestershire GAP; Warwickshire GAP; Shropshire GAP; Clwydian Range AONB GAP; Black COuntry GAP Steering Group; Staffordshire GAP Steering Group; Doncaster Borough Council LGAP, and more.

  • Repository for National collections
    The National Geological Materials Collection (NGMC), housed by BGS, includes core, palaeontology and petrology collections, recorded in a database of over 200,000 entries. The National Building and Decorative Stones collection is now also located at BGS’ headquarters. The collection contains approximately 10,000 samples, recording the changing trends and diverse use of dimension stone over the past 150 years.

  • Links with English Heritage through Building Stone conservation
    Transfer of National Building and Decorative Stone collection (UK collection only) from the NHM to BGS headquarters at Keyworth.

Objective 8 (Theme 4)

Share good practice

  • Contributors to or hosts of geodiversity-related websites
    “Planning 4 Minerals”, “Foundations of the Mendips” and “Explore Quarry Restoration” websites provide information and advice to a variety of stakeholders including the general public, communities impacted by mineral extraction, mineral operators, planning authorities, site restoration designers and environmental conservation groups.

  • Links with English Heritage through Building Stone conservation
    The Strategic Stone Study (SSS), in partnership with English Heritage, was set up in response to a report to CLG on the ‘Planning for the Supply of Natural Building and Roofing Stone in England and Wales’. The SSS is aiming to increase the recognition of valuable building stone assets in active and disued quarries in LDPs to prevent sterilisation of potentially finite buidling/conservation resources.

  • Links with English Heritage through Building Stone conservation
    “Building a Future for Stone” symposium, held at the Geological Society in London. Aimed at planners, architects, stoneproducers and heritage conservation professionals, the symposium addressed current issues of building and roofing stone in the UK, and how to improve the use and availability of indigenous building stone now and for the future.

Objective 9 (Theme 5)

Make relevant to the wider world

  • Geoheritage Project
    Focused on producing popular geodiversity publications: “Exploring the Landscape of Assynt” (started as one off project, producing a geological map of the area with a booklet describing geological walks - now formed the basis for a new series of maps and books) and “Exploring the landscape of Charnwood Forest”.

  • Contributors to or hosts of geodiversity-related websites
    “Planning 4 Minerals”, “Foundations of the Mendips” and “Explore Quarry Restoration” websites provide information and advice to a variety of stakeholders including the general public, communities impacted by mineral extraction, mineral operators, planning authorities, site restoration designers and environmental conservation groups.

  • National Science and Engineering Week
    “Rockwatch”, the junior club of the Geologists’ Association, is held at the BGS Headquarters as part of National Science and Engineering Week. Activities include gold panning, generating an earthquake, make your own fossil replicas or buy the real thing from the BGS Shop. Observe drilling samples taken from the earth beneath your feet, and the opportunity to see and touch fossils from the Museum’s Collection. BGS geologists are available to meet and children can learn first-hand what they do.

Objective 11 (Theme 5)

Create resources to help integrate geodiversity into learning

  • 3-D Geological Modelling
    BGS staff converted information from approximately 600,000 borehole logs held in BGS archives into a data format for the latest in 3-D technology, creating models which appear to ‘float’ away from a projector screen when seen wearing high-tech goggles. The three-dimensional visualisation facility (the 3DVF) at the BGS’s headquarters. A 1:1million scale model of the whole of the UK has been completed and mainly serves as an educational tool, used to give an overview of UK geology, including major faults, and can show other features such as the magnitude and depth of earthquakes. Regional models extend to a depth of 5km, which can be used for the strategic assessment of groundwater and energy resources, and for deep underground storage and waste repositories. Detailed superficial deposit thickness models concentrate on near surface geology and are used, for example, in civil engineering, in the evaluation of groundwater resources and possible water pollution, and in the prediction of surface hazards such as landslides and the collapse of underlying rocks

  • National Science and Engineering Week
    Hosting a Fossil and Rock Show for primary schools – suitable for children at Key Stage 2.

Objective 14 (Theme 6)

Encourage working together

  • Involvement in the production of many LGAPs
    Involved in auditing geological and geomorphological sites and features of interest to form the evidence base for the promotion of geo-conservation activities at a regional and local level. BGS has undertaken audits to provide the baseline data for various local Geodiversity Actions Plans, including: Northumberland GAP; West Lothian Geodiversity Framework (GAP); Yorkshire Dales & Craven Lowlands GAP; County Durham Geodiversity Audit; advise on the framing of the North Pennines AONB GAP; Cheshire GAP and revision; Hereford & Worcestershire GAP; Warwickshire GAP; Shropshire GAP; Clwydian Range AONB GAP; Black COuntry GAP Steering Group; Staffordshire GAP Steering Group; Doncaster Borough Council LGAP, and more.