Geoweek 2022: Saturday 7 May to Sunday 15 May
Explore the connection between the cumbrian landscape, its people and the geology around us. Cumbria has some of the richest geological heritage in the world - Half a billion years of Earth history laid open across our craggy surface, skirted with undulating blankets of younger strata and sculpted by prehistoric ice. The bones of a landscape that inspired poetry and art from luminaries such as Ruskin, Wordsworth, Turner and Coleridge. In celebration of this, Tullie House have teamed up with societies and museums across the county to create 10 days of Geology themed events. To find out and event near you, visit the Geoweek website by clicking here.
We wanted to say a special thank you to the societies that have volunteered their support and knowledge for Geoweek 2022. We would not be able to celebrate our beautiful landscape without their continued efforts to preserve the Geological heritage of Cumbria.
Cumbria Geoconservation (CGC) led Geology walks
CGC is the leading expert on important geological sites in Cumbria. They are a volunteer led organisation who conserve, evaluate and record 280 local geological sites. This year they have been kind enough to work with museums across Cumbria to offer a wide range of guided walks and talks. To find out more on the amazing work they do and get some free resources visit here.
Cumbria Amenity Trust and Mining History (CATMHS)
CATMHS has been supporting all our partners with local mining knowledge, provided photographs of mines and mineral veins for some of the exhibits, and they with be giving a talk and walks with the National Trust and The Ruskin Museum. Please click here to visit their website and find out more on how you can get involved.
Please scroll to the bottom from a downloadable flyer, events timetable and printable webpage.
What’s on during Geoweek: Full programme
Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery
The Geology collection has been awarded Designated status by Arts Council England. We hold a significant mineral collection, including specimens from the world-renowned Caldbeck Fells. Among our 6,000 fossils, there is material collected by people such as Professor Robert Harkness and Jane Donald, as well as fossils representing the varied stratigraphy of Cumbria, including footprints, fish, and reptiles.
Special Exhibit: Mining for Minerals
Tullie house will be exhibiting some rare and wonderful minerals from some of the lesser-known mines across the region. Highlighting what and why the minerals were mined, with recent and historic photographs of the mines in their heyday.
Tickets: included with general admission, no need to book.
Permanent Exhibit: The Formations Gallery
Explore the formation of Cumbria’s geological past.
In Gallery: Geology Rocks
Thursday 5 and 12 May
You'll have the opportunity to hold some of these fantastic objects and to hear more about them from our geology curator, plus ask any of those burning questions. Come along for this unique opportunity to get up close and personal with the collections! It's included with general admission/an annual ticket, find out more here.
Geology Drawing Workshop
Saturday 7 May 10am - 15:30pm
A unique chance to be inspired by some of the geology collection highlights, Tullie House will be showcasing spectacular and interesting specimens from the collection. Geology Curator, Neil Owen will be running this adult class. Unfortunately equipment will not be provided, so you'll have to bring your own sketchpad and pencils.
Places are limited and must be booked in advance. You can book tickets here or call the box office on 01228 618700.
Guided walks with Cumbria Geonconservation
Cumbria Geoconservation and Tullie House have paired up to offer some free walks around Carlisle. Travel back 251 million years ago and explore the rivers of the Triassic desert in Gelt Woods on Wednesday 11 May. Then time travel 359 million years ago to the tropical seas of the Carboniferous in Coombe Crags on Sunday 15 May. There are limited spaces so, please book in advance through the links below.
Cumbria Geoconservation guided walks Led by Steve Rozario
Gelt Woods – A braided river in the Triassic desert
10am, Wednesday 11 May
A 2 mile walk on forest paths, some moderately steep ups and downs. Excursion expected to take 2 hours. No toilets at start.
Meet at River Gelt Car Park, NY 519 591
Group size: Max 12 people
All children under 16, must be accompanied by an adult. Book your free place here or by calling box office on 01228 618700.
Coombe Crags – Tropical seas and river deltas of the Carboniferous
10am, Sunday 15 May
A 4 mile walk on field and forest paths, some steep ups and downs, requiring reasonable agility. Small risk of vertigo. Excursion expected to take 3-4 hours. Packed lunch recommended. No toilets at start.
Meet at Banks Car Park, NY 574 647
Group size: Max 12 people
All children under 16, must be accompanied by an adult. Book your free place here or by calling box office on 01228 618700.
PhotoCredit: Steve Rozario
Are leading a partnership with the Friends of the Lake District, CGC, and many more to reveal and protect the hidden heritage of the Westmorland Dales, enabling more people to connect with enjoy and benefit from this inspirational landscape. This year they have offered five walks across the Orton area by leading experts in the field.
Activities led by David Evans, assisted by Sylvia and Stephen.
Great Asby Scar Guided GeoWalk
10am - 3pm, Saturday 7 May
Meet at Market Square in Orton (NY 623083).
A guided circular walk from Orton up the bridleway onto Orton Scar, past Beacon Hill and along to Knott, before descending to Gamelands Stone Circle and back across fields to Orton. The walk will be an introduction to the limestone geology of the area, including its scars and pavements, but will also look at the impact of glaciation, the use of stone as a building material and other heritage features.
Waterproofs and sturdy footwear recommended. Moderate to rough, some stiles/gates, boggy areas, steep ground and limestone pavement which will be slippery if wet. It can also be quite exposed along the higher ground with little shelter from the wind.
Bring your own packed lunch. Public toilets in Orton. Please note, dogs are not allowed on this walk.
Group size: Max 12 people. Book your place on the Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership site here.
Introduction to Geology
9.30am - 12.30pm, Friday 13 May
Meet at Orton Market Hall
An Introduction to geology and rocks for Adults. Learn about the the main rock types in Cumbria and the Westmorland Dales, the forces that created them and the significance of plate tectonics, their characteristics and some of their distinctive fossils through a series of presentations and hands on activities.
Experts will be on hand from Cumbria GeoConservation and the Westmorland Dales Scheme to share their expertise.
Group size max 24 people. Book your place here.
Geological Walks around Orton
1pm - 4pm, Friday 13 May
Two alternative afternoon walks will explore the geology around Orton. Both walks will demonstrate how geology has shaped the landscape we see today, from 400 million years ago to the last Ice Age just 26,000 years ago. Experts will be on hand from Cumbria GeoConservation and the Westmorland Dales Scheme to share their expertise and enthusiasm.
Orton Village and Surrounding Area: A gentle walk around the village and the immediate surrounding area, looking at the area’s geology through the rocks which have been used as building stone as well as the rocks in the landscape.
Orton to the Knott above Gamelands Stone Circle: A slightly more strenuous walk up to the Knott above Gamelands Stone Circle, including fossil-rich quarries and limestone pavements.
Outdoor clothes (suitable for any weather), waterproofs and sturdy footwear (walking boots or wellingtons). If it is sunny you may want to consider a hat and/or sun-cream.
Max group size: 12 people for each walk. Book your place here.
Places are limited and must be booked in advance. Please visit their website for more information.
University of Cumbria
Geoweek 2022 Symposium: Communication Measures to Bridge 4.543 billion years
Thursday 12 May & Friday 13 May
Vallum Gallery, University of Cumbria, Institute of Arts, Brampton Road Campus, Carlisle, Cumbria, CA3 9AY.
The University of Cumbria Institute of Arts’ Arts Research Initiative (ARI) will become ‘host’ in a partnership with Tullie House Museum for the national event GeoWeek. As part of the event, we will offer a free public symposium at our Brampton Road Campus in Carlisle, which aims to explore themes of cultural engagement with the geologic, particularly through the interpretations of artists and cultural practitioners. The Cumbrian region has a rich history of such investigations from luminaries such as Wordsworth, Turner, West, Martineau, Southey, Atkinson, Graves, Nicholson, Harrison and Fell. This Symposium will present a range of responses to GeoWeek, focusing on themes such as the Anthropocene, Deep time, Strata, Underworlds, Crystals and Landforms, seen through the lens of contemporary art interventions and artists’ responses. Keynote speakers include American artist Bryan McGovern Wilson and Glasgow based artist Ilana Halperin.
Additionally, the Institute’s Arts Research Group of doctoral researchers (ARG) will also present artworks and films at The Vallum Gallery at the Brampton Road Campus throughout Geoweek. Workshops will also be offered, notably Dr Penny Bradshaw’s workshop at Brantwood on Geology and Identity in Cumbrian Literature, Monday May 9 10.30am -12.30pm.
Whilst Cumbrian geology is foregrounded, this international symposium also considers a much broader range of contexts and geologies. In encouraging provocative, divergent, and critical artists’ engagement, the event seeks to prompt interdisciplinary and public facing discourse between scholars, artists, and cultural practitioners.
All are Welcome! Please book through Eventbrite:
Day 1: Communication Measures to Bridge 4.543 billion years: GeoWeek 2022 Day 1 Registration, Thu 12 May 2022 at 09:30 | Eventbrite
Day 2: Communication Measures to Bridge 4.543 billion years: GeoWeek 2022 Day 2 Registration, Fri 13 May 2022 at 09:50 | Eventbrite
Communication Measures to Bridge 4.543 Billion Years GeoWeek Exhibition
Open Monday 9 to Friday 13 May, 9am – 5pm
Including artwork by: Jackie Haynes, Laura M R Harrison, Bridget Kennedy, Patti Lean, Calum Eccleston, Aaron Tan, Catriona Archibald and Tristan Poyser.
The Ruskin Museum was opened in 1901 as Coniston’s permanent memorial to it most famous resident, John Ruskin, and as a celebration of the local heritage. Ruskin was a keen amateur geologist: he collected minerals and crystals from an early age; one of his first published works was a Study of the Formation of Agates in the Geological Magazine; his drawings and sketches of mountains are studies in geology.
Their Copper collection has been re-displayed with a new case and interpretation, including an Audio-Visual show. The project’s aim managed to consolidate the industrial remains in the Coppermines Valley and Tilberthwaite, so that these sites would be removed from the Heritage at Risk Register, to improve access to the sites and tell the story through on-site interpretation panels, self-guided trails, and online learning resources.
Every Stone is a Mountain in Miniature: Ruskin, Geology and Art' Talk and walk by Jamie Barnes
Jamie will give a short talk in amongst the Ruskin Museum geology collection exploring how Ruskin used geology as a way of judging painting, and how he saw the macro in the micro 'in every stone can be found a mountain in miniature'. The group will then move outside to discuss Ruskin related artworks which depict the landscape around the Museum.
The Ruskin Museum had teamed up with Cumbria Geoconservation and Cumbria Amenity Trust and Mining History Society to offer you the chance to experience Coniston in a new way.
Making Sense of our Landscape – Coniston fells' Talk and walk by Carolina Goodship (CGC) and Warren Allison (CATMHS)
Carolina will begin her talk in Ruskin Museum's Coppermines display. Then she will take attendees on a short, accessible walk into the start of the Coppermines estate as a backdrop to talking about the surrounding landscape - 'A Land of Fire and Ice' - and the history of geology.
Explore Brown Howe Quarry and discover some of the Lake District’s fiery past (Coniston) Led by Audrey Brown from CGC
An old quarry with two interesting rock types. Flat walking inside the quarry. No public toilets.
Date: Tuesday 10th May
Time: 2 - 3.30 pm
Meet: Meet in the quarry, up a short steep track just south of the Brown Howe Car Park, on the opposite side of the road (SD 289 909)
Max group size: 15
Places are limited and must be booked in advance, please email to confirm your place: email@example.com
Programme update - The Trowbarrow Quarry walk is booked through Kendal Museum.
The National Trust carries on the ambition set out by their founders: to care for nature, beauty, and history. They are managing properties across the country and wanted to highlight some of the incredible sites of geological heritage during Geoweek.
Wordsworth House and Garden
‘Scree’ Exhibition at Wordsworth House & Garden
Scree is an exhibition which challenges us to rethink the basis of our relationship with the fells. Co-created with Cockermouth poet, photographer and writer Lucy Burnett, this project encourages us to respond personally to this most loved of landscapes and the impact we as humans have on it. open daily except Thursday and Friday until 6 November, 10am–4pm – admission free with entry to the house and garden. More information on the Scree exhibition.
Open day Saturday 14 May 10am - 2.30pm
Programme update - Sorry, Sunday 8 May has now been cancelled due to the Fred Whitton challenge using the Whinlatter pass on the same day.
Borrowdale Graphite mines talk (online) with CATMHS
8pm, Thursday 12 May
A walk of Goldscope Mine’s 500 year legacy
10am, Friday 13 May
William Wordsworth’s poetry centred on the ideals of love of Nature, the power of the imagination and the importance of empathy for others. This was poetry for a new age, and his writing still has the power to speak to us today. The Museum tells the story of Wordsworth’s radical and creative life through a collection of handwritten manuscripts, journals, letters, published poetry and personal items.
For Geoweek 2022 they will be highlighting some of the poet William Wordsworth’s writing on mountains and geology in activities taking place each day at Wordsworth Grasmere. Discover Wordsworth’s Guide to the Lakes on Gallery Tours, see nature through fresh eyes whilst sketching, and try the geology-themed writing prompts at Loose Leaf Poetry. In a behind the scenes tour of the Jerwood Centre, Wordsworths’ state-of-the-art library and archive, they will be a display exploring the connections between Wordsworth and locally born geologist Jonathan Otley.
To launch Geoweek geologist Tom Garner will lead a geology-inspired guided walk around Loughrigg Terrace and Rydal Caves. The walk will explore new ways of interpreting and appreciating the landscape that Wordsworth wrote about. Different activities take place each day; Visit Wordsworth Grasmere website for more information.
Brantwood is a historic house, estate, and vibrant centre for the arts on the shore of Coniston Water. It was once home to John Ruskin, England’s greatest art critic, thinker, and social reformer.
After an absence of nearly a century, his personal collection of over 2,000 museum-quality mineral specimens has returned to Brantwood. Ruskin was one of the last great polymaths for whom art and science were inseparable, and one of the Victorian era’s most active private collectors. A dedicated exhibition centre is now open showcasing the collection in all its glory. The display explores Ruskin’s fascination with mountains, minerals, and the world of geology.
Throughout Geoweek their focus will be to release a daily inclusivity focused video short, featuring different aspects of the Brantwood relationship to Ruskin and Geology. These range from a bite-sized talk about the geological character of our grounds from the garden and estate team, a culinary demonstration of how our landscape has been formed from our team in the ‘Terrace’ café, and as you may expect sharing their curatorial highlights of the 2000 geological related specimens in our collection e.g., including items on display in the ‘Treasury’ gallery. All video’s will be supported by a series of short digital posts on Brantwood’s social media channels. Click here for their Facebook channel and click here for their Twitter channel.
There will be a family fun event run at Brantwood:
Mountains in miniature: Geoweek family activity day
Sunday 8th May 2022 10.30 – 3.30pm
Trails, activities, and storytelling for young explorers
11.00 am. ‘The Rock that Couldn’t Roll’ and other stories.
1.30pm. ‘ A Rock Can Be – – – ‘ and more stories
Lake Shore: (Meet in the Hayloft)
Pebble trail: 12noon and 2.30 pm. Help create a shoreline Pebble Trail in the style of Andy Goldsworthy with your own special design in chalk.
Free with admission.
Brantwood have teamed up with the University of Cumbria to put on the following workshop:
Geology and Identity in Cumbrian Literature: A 2-hour workshop
Monday May 9th 10:30-12:30
Led by Dr Penny Bradshaw, Associate Professor of Literature at the University of Cumbria and Programme Leader for MA Literature, Romanticism, and the English Lake District.
'At bottom the Lake District is a piece of rock. It is the rock which makes the land and the land which makes the people' Norman Nicholson, Portrait of the Lakes (1963). We will read and look together at a range of poems and prose extracts* which explore the importance of geology within the cultural imagination of Cumbrian writers, particularly in relation to questions of identity. Moving from Wordsworth to Ruskin, and then onto Nicholson and more recent writers, we will reflect on the ways in which Cumbrian writers have explored the idea that the identity of the Cumbrian people is fundamentally shaped by the geological underpinnings of the region they inhabit.
*A selection of poems and extracts will be provided to attendees on the day.
Dr Penny Bradshaw is an Associate Professor of English Literature at the University of Cumbria. She is Programme Leader for the MA in Literature, Romanticism, and the English Lake District, and is also thematic lead for Cultural Landscapes within the University’s Centre for National Parks and Protected Areas. Penny specialises in regional Romanticism and literary responses to place. Recent publications include: The Lake Poems of John Wilson (2012), Ann Radcliffe’s Observations During a Tour to the Lakes (2014), Literary Lancaster (2016), and A Literary Walking Tour of Ambleside (2021).
For more information on their events visit the Brantwood website.
The Beacon Museum
The Beacon focuses on Whitehaven’s rich heritage, from Georgian industrialism to modern day nuclear power industry through multisensory experiences. You will get to use their powerful telescopes, look at object displays and engage with helpful, easy to read digital interactives to find out about the town and harbour of Whitehaven, its development and geology. They have a wide range of immersive digital experiences from, VR to touch screen games. Get involved with their interactive digital geology experience found on the top floor. Visit their website to find out more.
Nenthead Mines is a historic place at Nenthead, near Alston, in Cumbria, UK. This remote valley is covered by remains from the lead and zinc mining industry of the North Pennines, including mine entrances, watercourses, dressing-floors, and buildings. The site is famous for its geology and is notable for rare lichens and plants growing on the metal-rich mine dumps. Most of the valley is a Scheduled Ancient Monument.
The volunteer team are leading a guided walk about Minerals and Mines in the North Pennine Orefield on 11th May, starting at 1030hrs. This walk will study both surface and underground exposures.
Killhope is a multi-award-winning 19th century mining museum in the centre of the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), where you can experience the life and work of the lead. Killhope will have 1 hour talk and site tour Rocks, Soils and the Rest and including the washing floor from 2pm. These will take place on Monday 9th and Friday 13th May. And there will be a chance to view a Prospects Pavillion.
To find out more please visit their website by clicking here To find out more please visit their website by clicking here.
Windermere Jetty Museum
The Jetty Museum is a part of Lakeland Arts, who are a major player in the north of England’s arts, culture, and heritage scene. They have built a great reputation for our historic buildings, museums, gallery collections and rolling arts programmes. On Saturday 14th May 10am to 12am a family art workshop “Art Rocks!" will be run by the Windermere science festival. You will be creating art inspired by geology, with a bit of learning about geology and geological processes. . Please click here to visit Windermere Jetty Museum website to find out more.
The Dock Museum
The award-winning Dock Museum has several permanent exhibits based on the geology and geography of the Furness area. This includes iron ore; the iron ore mines and how Barrow in Furness was built on this discovery. They also have exhibits of Viking hoards, stone axes and much more going back over the centuries humankind has inhabited the Furness area.
They will be hosting a lecture by Audrey Brown from CGC during the week. An indoor meeting to find out about the rocks in and around Barrow. No prior knowledge needed. Fully wheelchair accessible. Meet in the Research Pod in the Museum. Our lecture will be 1:30 to 3pm on Thursday 12th May 2022. Entry to the Museum is free.
Please click here to visit The Dock Museum website to find out more on booking.
Penrith and Eden Museum
The Penrith and Eden Museum have a permanent display in their upper galley called ‘Ages of Eden’, where they take you through a journey through the geology of Eden. They have 453 Minerals, 234 Rocks and 1057 Fossils; mainly derived from a founder’s private collection - Vice-Admiral Wauchope of Dacre Lodge. This gallery has restricted access within the museum but, there is a booklet in the lower gallery showing the specimens on display and a virtual tour on their blog. Click here to read their blog.
Cumbria Geoconservation and Penrith and Eden Museum have teamed up to offer some free walks in the area. There are limited spaces so, please book in advance through Penrith and Eden Museum's Eventbrite.
GeoWalk on Lonscale Fell, Skiddaw
10am, Saturday 7 May
Meet at car park just beyond Blencathra Centre at the end of the road from Threlkeld. Map OL4 NY 302 257)
This guided geo-walk along Lonscale Fell is to the Skiddaw Granite aureole to see the metamorphic changes caused by intrusion of Skiddaw Granite pluton. Boots, mountain-walking kit essential. Bring coffee & biscuits (or lunch if you want to walk further e.g., to Skiddaw House). No public toilets.
Max group size: 10
GeoWalk around CWT's Eycott Hill reserve
10am, Tuesday 10 May
Meet at Cumbria Wildlife Trust car park near Berrier, Map OL5, Grid Ref NY 394 301
Walking on rough terrain. Wellingtons recommended plus usual hill walking kit (waterproofs, warm clothing). No public toilets.
Max group size: 10
All day excursion (in 2 parts) to see igneous intrusions into Skiddaw Group
10am, Thursday 12 May
Meet at the start of the public footpaths beginning just east of St Margaret’s Church (NY190302) where there is limited roadside parking.
In the morning we will walk for about 2 hours up to an elevation of about 350m to see a series of rare igneous rocks on Sale Fell known as minettes (dark-coloured igneous rocks composed mainly of biotite and alkaline feldspars). Following a lunch stop in Embleton (possibly at the Wheatsheaf Inn), we will walk up a rough track (90 to 100m height gain) to Embleton Quarry and spend about 1.5 hours examining a diorite sill. Boots and usual hill-walking kit (waterproofs, warm clothes) essential. Toilets only available at the Wheatsheaf Inn.
Max group size: 10
A geological walk around Keswick
10am - 12pm, Wednesday 11 May
Meet outside the Theatre by the Lake
Walk from Crow Park to Lake Shore and Castlehead. The walk will finish outside the Moot Hall. Please wear walking shoes/trainers and bring walking poles (if used) for optional steep 150m ascent of Castlehead. Public toilets are available near the theatre and Moot Hall.
Max group size: 12
Kendal Museum has a fabulous geology collection, with rooms of rocks and minerals flowing between the natural history galleries. They also have excellent digital resources, where you can view photographs of local rock and mineral collections.
Please click here for more information.
Kendal Museum and Cumbria Geoconservation have teamed up to create a geowalk near the Kendal area. This walk is led by Carolina.
River Lune Ramble
10am, Saturday 7 May
Meet at the Devil’s Bridge, Kirkby Lonsdale SD 6156 7823.
A geological walk journeying back in time exploring the rocks and fossils along the River Lune at Kirkby Lonsdale.
Overall walking distance is 1.1 km. We will be exploring the rocks below the Devil’s Bridge and then walking along the footpath to Ruskin’s View, dipping down to the river along the way to examine the rocks. Care will be needed while on the rocky outcrops as these can be slippery. Sturdy footwear is recommended. Towards the end of the walk, we will be going up the steep Radical Steps, finishing at Ruskin’s View. The excursion is expected to take around 1.5 to 2 hours. Public toilets at the Devil’s Bridge.
Group size: Max 16 people
Family walk to look at the rocks and fossils of this dramatic quarry. No public toilets.
Date: Sunday 8th May
Time: 2 - 3.30 pm
Meet: Meet at the Karabiner Gate on the way into the quarry SD 480 756.
Max group size: 15
Norman Nicholson Society
The Norman Nicholson Society is based in Millom, the home of the celebrated poet for almost all his life (1914– 1987). As well as local themes regarding living and working in the iron-mining and working town (and the demise of those industries) he is noted for his knowledge of natural history. His output included poems about birds, plants and especially regarding geology and environmental matters. The Millom Heritage and Arts Centre contains geology and mining exhibits as well as on Nicholson and the cultural life of the town.
On 14th May there will be a 30-minute talk at the Millom Heritage and Arts Centre (Railway Station) will be followed by a short walk around the town showing the links between geological heritage and the poetry of Millom poet Norman Nicholson. 11.00 at the Heritage Centre, repeated at 12.00. In the afternoon there will be a discussion on some of Nicholson's poetry in St George's Church.
For more information on the society, please click here. Please contact Professor Brian Whalley for booking information via firstname.lastname@example.org