The fossil cliffs
Over 50 million years ago Essex was beneath a warm sea. Rivers flowed into this sea bringing mud and silt which eventually became compacted and formed what we now know to be London Clay, which makes up the base of the Naze.
The historic, and instantly recognisable, cliffs underneath the Naze have been the subject of public debate for decades.
A Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) the cliffs form one of the finest geographical sites in Britain. They are formed from London Clay at the base which is 54 million years old and overlaid with a sandy deposit called Red Craig, which is about two million years old.
Walk along the cliff top
The cliff faces are popular with fossil hunters who come to search for the fossils of the marine life like gastropods, nautiloids, turtles and many species of fish including sharks which would have swum in the sea millions of years ago. The London Clay is also famed for fruits and seeds of subtropical plants which have been carried by rivers into the sea.
Take the route through the trees
last updated: 11/04/2008 at 14:08
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