Beacon Hill, Sedgley is an important geosite for its exposures of fossiliferous Silurian, Aymestry Limestone Strata of approximately 420 million years in age and its commanding views across the southern Black Country and to the west to the hills of Shropshire and Wales. It has a significant contrast in its fossils to those of nearby Wren’s Nest National Nature Reserve. The Beacon site is one of the chain of hills that lit fires to signal the arrival of the Spanish armada at the shores of England during Elizabethan times. It also contains a notable landmark structure ‘The Sedgley Beacon’, a Victorian tower constructed under the orders of Lord Wrottersley and said to be his tower for observing the night sky.
This is a very important scientific and educational site and the rockfaces and mining features are designated as nationally important and protected under UK laws. The protection covers both geology as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)’s and for mining heritage as a Scheduled Ancient Monument (SAM).
Fossil collecting is permitted from the loose scree in the quarry that continually builds at the foot of the rockfaces but is not permitted from rockfaces that are protected by planning and development control law.
There is currently no visitor centre, cafe or toilets at the site, so plan your visit with this in mind. There is a very traditional Black Country pub, ‘The Beacon Hotel at the end of Beacon Lane on the approach to Beacon Hill and its tower, where refreshments and a limited range of snacks and food is available.
Geosite 002 Wren's Nest National Nature Reserve - world renowned site and one of the best places to find fossils. Less than 1km from the museum. Call + 44 (0)1384 812785 - Wren's Nest National Nature Reserve.
Geosite 009 Dudley Canal and Tunnel Trust - Singing Cavern Experience - take a canal narrow boat trip into the underground limestone mines. Call + 044 (0) 121 557 6265 - Dudley Canal and Tunnel Trust.
Geosite 018 The Black Country Living Museum - experience life in a Black Country mining and industrial village during the industrial revolution. Call + 44 (0) 0121 557 9643 - The Black Country Living Museum.