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Photo of Stourbridge Old Town Gasworks

Geosite No 45

Stourbridge Old Town Gasworks

This geosite is important as the only publically accessible exposure of interglacial deposits in the Black Country which are seen resting on exposed solid strata belonging to the Triassic Wildmoor Sandstone Member. The bedrock contains excellent exposures of cross bedded sandstones. The interglacial deposits are present as a river terrace gravel (the First Terrace of the River Stour) which is of the Quaternary Ipswichian interglacial. Extensive rock faces run around the edges of this site and are a remnant of a much earlier period of sand and gravel quarrying that created a platform on which the old coal-gas works was established.

In recent years this was the access road adjacent to the rock faces so that easy future access is guaranteed. As the name suggests, this site is associated with a former gasworks industry and the soft rocks of the Triassic here hide a subterranean network of tunnels behind them that were air-raid shelters for workers at gasworks during the last war. This area will also feature in future plans to interpret the geology of the 'Crystal Mile' reflecting the glass making area of the southern part of the Black Country Global Geopark. This is an important site for geoeducation, geosciences and as a geotourism resource.

www.amblecotehistorysociety.org.uk/Contents/Subjects/Airraid%20Shelters?Industry/Gasworks/Gasworks.htm

Geosite facilities

There is no visitor centre, café or toilets at the site, so plan your visit with this in mind.

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Geosite 019 The Red House Glass Cone  is open from 10am to 3pm Monday to Friday, 11am to 4pm Saturday & Sunday. Admission is free. It has a gift shop, craft studios, coffee house and toilets on site. Free car parking is also available. The coffee house offers a hot and cold menu with drinks and seasonal foods. Visit www.dudley.gov.uk/see-and-do/museums or call 01384 812750.

Geosite 019 The White House Cone Museum of Glass, the former home of Stuart Crystal and now opposite the Red House Glass Cone will open late 2019. It will house the glass collection for the borough. For more information visit www.britishglassfoundation.org.uk

Geosite 019 Ruskin Glass Centre, formerly the site of and Webb Corbett and Royal Doulton Crystal is home to over 25 craft businesses, has an organic café and the Glass House Heritage Centre offers guided tours providing the history and heritage of the site. Ruskin Glass Centre is part of Ruskin Mill Land Trust who specialise in educating young people with learning disabilities through a craft and land based curriculum. Admission is free and the centre's opening hours are from 9.30am to 4pm Monday to Saturday. Visit www.ruskinglasscentre.co.uk