The Quaternary of South Midlands & the Welsh Marches was produced to accompany the QRA Annual Field Meeting, 24-27 March 1997.
The Midlands of England and the Welsh marches contain a diverse record of Quaternary events, only some of which are documented in this field guide. The region contains sedimentary records of glacial and ﬂuvial activity, evidence of changing ﬂora and fauna and of human occupation of the landscape and also a record of geomorphological evolution of a region that spans upland and lowland areas of the UK. The region covered by this Guide includes Quaternary sequences and localities that have been the focus of research for most of the last one hundred years and also new sites that have received only recent attention. Some of these sequences, such as the ﬂight of terraces preserved in the valley of the River Severn (Wills, 1938), have provided important stratigraphical frameworks for correlation within the area and with adjacent regions. All of the sites visited on the excursion are the subject of continuing research and offer exciting potential to reveal still more about the Quaternary history of the region.
The excursions visited three different drainage systems; the rivers Wye and the Usk; the Severn valley and the upper Thames valley. Each of these areas offers the opportunity to consider different aspects of the Quaternary history of the region and to examine the records for environmental change and landscape development over both long and short timescales.
The purpose of this guide is to provide an introduction to the region through a series of review papers, followed by descriptions of each of the localities to be visited and summaries of the main research findings. As much of the work is in progress, ﬁndings reported here are preliminary and will, no doubt, be reported more fully elsewhere. Sections described and illustrated here may no longer be available at the sites, however it is hoped that representative sections will be visible to the excursion party.