Field trip: 8 June 2013 - Leaders: Chris Hall, Steve Livera and Pete Rawson
The bright sunshine and warm weather ensured a really good attendance for this joint trip with the Scarborough Archaeological and Historical Society and the main safety risk was sunstroke, a novelty for the RGG in the field. The party met at Rosedale West and walked along the old track to the top of the calcining kilns and viewed the inclined tramway by which the ironstone was brought up from the mines. A short walk took in the sites of the engine shed and workers' cottages and this was followed by an overview of the geological context of the Rosedale East mines which have had a marked influence on the landscape of the valley. The party returned, passing below the calcining kilns to the incline, to look down onto the workings for the Garbutts and Kitchings deposits (the famous magnetic ironstone).
Our knowledge of these mines are greatly aided by a paper by the outstanding engineer John Marley, written in 1870, and we paid homage to him by using his diagrams to outline the original features of the now completely exhausted deposits. Paul Wood showed us some seismic sections which suggest a deep seated structural anomaly that may have influenced the formation of these completely unique sediments.
The party then reassembled above Hill Cottages in Rosedale East after lunch and Chris described the site of the old railway depot, coal bunkers and goods shed. Because of the now poor exposure the stratigraphic positioning of the mines was defined by first visiting an exposure of the Lower Jurassic, Yeovilian. Low Baring Member with its distinctive bioturbation, skolithos. The party found plenty of examples and proceeded to have a good ammonite hunt in the weathered rubble below the outcrop.
We then took the tramway route which passes close to the top of the very impressive Stone Kilns past a ventilator stack and two of the entrances to the East Mines. Adjacent to an adit opening marked by a well preserved stone arch is an exposure of the Dogger Formation cut into by a Saltwick Formation channel marking the complete change from shallow marine to 'deltaic' palaeoenvironments. The party then continued past a further drift entrance, the remains of an engine base and past the top of the Iron Kilns to the ruins of some workshops and the row of well preserved cottages at High Baring. Apparently the design of these cottages was driven by an old regulation-avoidance scheme and the poor quality local stone used in construction showed a focus on low cost development. A visit to Black Houses marked the furthest limit of the trip and on the return the party found and overviewed the Rosedale mine drainage adit that has been investigated by member Carl Thomas.