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Excursion title:

A new look at Wardie shore

Date & time:

Wednesday 23 September 2020 1pm

Finish time:



Tom Challands, University of Edinburgh

Excursion aims and description:

Wardie shore in north Edinburgh has been a favourite with geologists and palaeontologists since the early 19th century. The famous palaeoichthyologists Agassiz and Traquair described numerous fish from Wardie and work on the site was rejuvenated in the 1970’s by the late Stan Wood. Despite such iconic status Wardie has never received a detailed study of the changing environments represented by the various shales, silts and sands and how these changes correlate with the well-known fauna from the site. This field trip will explain recent work that has been conducted at Wardie that has illuminated the changing oxygen conditions in the once murky waters that harboured some quite indomitable beasts.

Meeting point:

At the start of the eastern breakwater in Wardie Bay by the beach just off Lower Granton Road NT 241 771

Excursion route:

From the meeting point we will head east along Wardie Shore as far as Trinity Pumping Station.

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

Variable from sandy beach to wet and slippy rocks covered in seaweed and algae. Care must be taken on rocks.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:


Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:


Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed?


May dogs be brought on the excursion?


Toilet information:

There are no public toilet facilities nearby

Geological map sheet:

BGS 1: 50 000 32E Edinburgh

OS map sheet:

Explorer sheet 350

References (see below):

Clarkson, E.N.K. (1986) Granton and Wardie shore, 76–80 In Lothian Geology an excursion guide, (eds A.D. McAdam and E.N.K. Clarkson) Scottish Academic Press, 221pp

Mitchell, G.H. and Mykura, W. (1962) The Geology of the Neighbourhood of Edinburgh.Memoirs of the Geological Survey of Great Britain (3rd edn)

Wood, S.P. (1975) Recent discoveries of Carboniferous fishes in Edinburgh. Scottish Journal ofGeology, 11, 251–8.

** Most useful reference **

Volume 16: Fossil Fishes of Great BritainChapter 9: British Carboniferous fossil fishes sitesSite: WARDIE (GCR ID: 1370)

available at: