Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Staithes - Jurassic Coast

Fossil shop at Robin Hood Bay 

Staithes is known for its fossils, part of the Jurassic coast line appears here in North Yorkshire and on the Wessex coastline as well.  Fossil hunting has been going on for many years, I did not know that the footprint of a dinosaur had appeared at Whitby beach but it is so. We have ammonites scattered around the house and LS found another one whilst pottering along the beach at Staithes.  I stayed back, the cliffs are formidable and dangerous, they overhang making slight noises as you listen to the sound of the breaking waves.  But rock has always fascinated me the colour and shape, these great formations thrown up by the upheavals of the earth are a reminder that this earth was once very different.  Yesterday someone put forth the theory (an old theory) that the dinosaurs because of their great weight did not move on the dry surface of the land but used the shallow seas to carry their weight.

Whitby Cliffs 

Whitby embedded fossil 

Staithe Cliffs - Intrepid LS goes forth 

Found on the beach at Staithes
Well that is as may be but too turn to the elegant spirals of the ammonite, and it should be remembered that our Neolithic ancestors  also took note of them as well, see the Stoney Littleton long barrow ammonite, and the belemites on the stones inside the chamber.  Linked through history the Celtic saints St.Hilda and St.Keyne banished the 'snakes' to a frozen stony death as ammonites, St.Hilda throwing them over the cliffs at Whitby and St.Keyne as well from Keynsham in Wiltshire.

Stoney  Littleton ammonite


  1. I could wish that all snakes be turned to stone or cast into a pit from which they couldn't escape!
    At my daughter's home down the road they have found [again] a large snake skin dangling from the tree that one has to pass under frequently.
    I'm always looking nervously up expecting something to dangle or plop in front of me.

  2. Hi MM, Not sure I would like to live in a country with snakes, the only (rare)poisonous snake we have is the adder, otherwise it is the harmless grass snake that lives in compost heaps.