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News & Links of Interest to Mineral & Fossil Collectors


Nevis Range and Mamores cover.

Exploring the Nevis Range and Mamores, Scotland by James Barnet.

Exploring the Nevis Range and Mamores, Scotland by James Barnet.

James Barnet has been a member of the Southampton Mineral and Fossil Society for over fifteen years and was also formerly a member of Rockwatch. He became interested in geology from an early age after discovering Eocene gastropods and shark's teeth in a deeply cut riverbed near his home in Bramshaw, New Forest. James went on to obtain a First Class Master's Degree in Geology from the University of Southampton in 2008, subsequently spending 6 years working for an oil & gas consultancy near Oxford, before commencing a PhD studying Late Cretaceous-Palaeocene climate change at the University of Exeter in September 2014.

Another of James' keen interests is mountain climbing and he has spent a significant portion of time climbing the Munros of Scotland, with a particular focus on the Nevis and Mamore ranges around Fort William in the west of the country. This book, the culmination of over 4 years work, aims to be the most complete guide available for this area. The key highlights of the book include:

  • A detailed section on the geological evolution and geology of the walking area, including photographs of the key rock types and a geological map (courtesy of the British Geological Survey),
  • A chapter on the weather and climate of the Fort William area using data obtained with permission from the UK Met Office, along with advice on how the amateur meteorologist can use publicly available surface pressure and synoptic charts to make their own predictions about mountain weather,
  • Brief sections on the flora and fauna of the area, as well as an account of the modern history of Ben Nevis,
  • Practical advice for walking in the mountains, both in summer and winter, as well as hints and tips for mountain photography, transport and accommodation,
  • A dedicated page to each Munro in the Nevis and Mamore ranges, with basic statistics such as height above sea level, pronunciation, English meaning of the Gaelic name, associated Munro Tops etc, accompanied by a high quality digital photograph,
  • 17 walking routes described in a detailed and descriptive "Wainwright" style, ranging from peaceful strolls through scenic glens to ascents of multiple Munro summits, each accompanied by a summary table, sketch map and altitude profile, as well as being lavishly illustrated with a selection of high quality digital photographs (more than 100 in the book in total).

This book is available through SMFS member Doug Barnet for £12 (Email:barnet205@btinternet.com; Telephone: 023 8081 2961)who can bring copies along to monthly meetings on request.

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Corundum variety ruby.

Corundum var. ruby. SMFS celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2011.

Going Strong for Over Forty Years

Southampton Mineral & Fossil Society was formed in 1971 and we celebrated our 40th anniversary in 2011. To commemorate the event Anita Wolfe compiled an 158 page illustrated A4 book about the Society and it's achievments over the last four decades. The book was made available to members and former SMFS members are invited to get in touch so that they can be sent an electronic copy if they are interested. Please email us using the Contact Us link above. Find out more about our history on the About SMFS page of this site.
This new web site is still edited by Gary Morse, so if you have have any news items or interesting links that you think other mineral and fossil collectors might be interested in please pass them on using the Contact Us link above and they will be posted here.

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Links to Other Sites of Interest

Information and General Interest Sites.

Dorset Doings Doreen Smith's new site on Dorset featuring a miscellany of geology, fossils, rocks and minerals all from Dorset.
Mineral Collectors Page Possibly one of the best starting pages on the WWW. Lots of very good links.
Fossils of Barton-on-Sea An excellent page featuring the Eocene fossils of the famous South Coast collecting site at Barton-on-Sea, Hampshire, England.
Mining in Tasmania This excellent site is all about Tasmanian mines and mining. Of particular interest is is a downloadable book "Turning Red Lead into Gold" the story of crocoite and other lead minerals of Tasmania.
The Fluorescent Mineral Society Specialist site on photoluminescence. Everything you want to know about fluorescent minerals.
The British Museum of Natural History This is the huge BMNH site. Pages on all subjects. The mineralogy department is doing some very interesting work.
West's Geology Directory Compiled by Dr. Ian West at The University of Southampton this award winning site is one of the most comprehensive for information and links. It is a large directory (100's of pages) of links, field trip guides and bibliographies, mostly on Southern England.
Charmouth Heritage Centre The Charmouth Heritage Centre is the focal point for fossil collecting along the South Coast. Good information on Jurassic exposures and fossils.
Jurassic Cliffs In a similar vein to that above this site covers the geology and palaeontology of Jurassic exposures exposure across the UK.
Gosport Museum Interesting paper on Recent Coastal Protection and Associated Temporary Exposures to the Middle Eocene Coastal Sections at Lee-on-the-Solent, Gosport, Hampshire by D.J. Kemp, Former Keeper of Geology.
Eocene and Oligocene Fossils A collection of Eocene and Oligocene Fossils by Alan Morton.
Ammonite This site is dedicated to the fossils of the lower Cretaceous Albian (Gault Clay and Folkestone Beds) in the county of Kent, England.
Sheppey Fossils Lower Eocene (Ypresian) fossils of the London Clay from the north coastal section of the Isle of Sheppey, Kent.
UK Fossils Great site dedicated to fossil enthusiasts.

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Links to other Groups, Clubs & Societies.

The Russell Society The Russell Society is a society of amateur and professional mineralogists which encourages the study, recording and conservation of mineralogical sites and material. This is the site for amateur mineral collectors.
Rockwatch The national group for young people. A very active organisation that all youngsters interested geological subjects should join.
Bournemouth Natural Science Society Information on the Natural Science Society which has a very active Geological Group.
Plymouth Mining & Mineral Club The site for minerals and mines information in the South West of the UK. Good articles and information.
Wessex Lapidary & Mineral Society Another UK Society makes it onto the WWW.
Sussex Mineral & Lapidary Society All about Sussex Mineral & Lapidary Society and details of the Sussex Mineral Show.
The Scottish Mineral & Lapidary Club Based in Edinburgh SMLC are one of the oldest clubs in the UK and this site has some interesting pictures of Scottish agates.
CMGS A new, and different, site for Cheltenham Mineralogical & Geological Society with some nice touches; look out for the tips page.
Soton Geology Field Study Group The site for Southampton Geology Field Study Group.
The Tertiary Research Group This site has information about the Group and their work with some very interesting papers.
Medway Lapidary & Mineral Society Information about MLMS activities and meetings.
Georgia Mineral Society The great site of our American friends who visited us in March 2002.

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UK Mineral & Fossil Dealers.

Mike's Minerals & Fossils Respected Lyme Regis dealer Mike Jeffries now has a full online internet sales site selling British and worldwide fossils, with a lot of Jurassic coast material, plus worldwide minerals. They will also provide information to the local visitor or fossil hunter to Lyme Regis in Dorset who might be interested in finding their own local fossils.

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Submit a Link

If you are a geological related group within the UK please send us your web site details so that we can foster links between the various groups for the mutual benefit of us all. Use the Contact Us link above to get in touch.
UK mineral and fossil dealers are welcome to request a link but we would expect a reciprocal link to our site. Contact us if you would like to have your site placed here.


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