Exploring West Sussex geology
with David Bone
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The Wealden Group

The Weald Clay is well known for its dinosaur fossils. This reconstruction of Iguanodon is in Southwater shopping centre. Other fossils include fish, plants, freshwater shells and the delicate remains of insects such as dragonflies.

Exposures of Weald Clay are mostly found in brick pits outside of West Sussex, such as this one at Smokejacks in Surrey. Permission is required for access but visits are often organised by various geology groups.

Horsham stone is a sandstone that occurs as layers within the Weald Clay. The ripple marks, shown here on a gravestone, indicate deposition in river channels. Horsham stone has been used extensively as roofing slate because it can be split into relatively thin layers.

Sussex marble is a freshwater limestone found locally developed within the Weald Clay. It is formed from the shells of a snail known as Viviparus (formerly known as Paludina) that accumulated in freshwater lakes. The rock is known as a marble because it can be cut and polished. It has been used as an ornamental stone and can be seen in many churches - not to be confused with Purbeck marble, which is similar but has smaller shells.