What makes Edinburgh special? Lots of different factors make a city, but one key feature that most visitors to Edinburgh notice is the dramatic landscape of the city centre. This is a landscape of rocky crags, cliffs and steep slopes surrounded by lower, flatter ground. It is derived from a mix of different kinds of rock – sedimentary and igneous.
Our Edinburgh’s Rocks and People poster for schools is designed to give an introduction to the rich story of Edinburgh’s dramatic landscape. The A2-size poster will be distributed for free to all secondary schools in the Lothian area. We are also developing accompanying online material, including suggested activities exploring these themes:
Edinburgh’s Rocks – what kind of rocks do we find in Edinburgh? How have they been used by people?
Evidence from the past – what do Edinburgh’s rocks tell us about the past? Where was Edinburgh when these rocks were being formed? What did the world look like then?
Making Edinburgh’s Landscape – how has the landscape been formed? What has been the impact on Edinburgh of the Ice Age and changing sea level?
James Hutton & the Rock Cycle – The Edinburgh geologist James Hutton (1726-1797) proposed that the Earth operated as a machine, where natural processes acted over immense time scales to erode the land and create new rocks. This was the beginning of our understanding of the rock cycle and the inter-relationships between sedimentary, metamorphic and igneous rocks.